Leveraging Biofuels for a Cleaner Mobility Future

Biofuels are critical to our energy future. No matter how far electric vehicles come in the next 25 years, the internal combustion engines of today will continue to be a big part of our transportation reality. The only way to continue to move forward with a newer, cleaner mobility future is to include sustainable, domestically sourced biofuels from biomass and waste in our transportation portfolio.

Spotlight

Swell Energy

Swell is a California-based residential energy storage developer and aggregator. Swell offers consumers bundled solutions including energy storage, solar, and energy management to save homeowners money and provide smart, clean, and secure home energy. Swell also works with utilities to develop residential energy storage programs that address specified utility needs. Most recently, Swell secured a 20 MWh, 3,000-home program with Southern California Edison, the largest residential storage fleet ever announced.

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Strategy and Best Practices, Energy

A Guide to Going Solar For Businesses

Article | July 27, 2022

Earth has become increasingly warmer every year with rising temperatures. The burning of fossil fuels in the past 150 years for electricity, heat, transportation, and any other human activity has increased greenhouse emissions. Other natural resources are also rapidly depleting, thus giving us a cause of worry. Several homeowners and mainly businesses are, therefore, turning to renewable energy sources to become self-sustainable and self-reliant. Costs of commercial electricity are rising day by day with no end in sight. By turning to green energy, businesses can reduce operational costs and reinvest that amount back into their businesses. If your business uses electricity for lighting, HAVC, computing, or production, opting solar for businesses will significantly reduce the cost. Installing these solar panels and combining them with an appropriate energy storage system, your business can save up to 20 to 25% energy and move towards energy independence. Eligibility for Going Solar One of the major factors to consider when going solar is whether it makes sense for your business to do so. Apart from this, going solar would be ideal for organizations that: Work in states like California, Hawaii, or any state that either has expensive energy or massive Federal incentives Have enough land, rooftops, or parking lots adjoining their businesses where the solar panels can Be set up Have prioritized sustainability Have massive energy demands Market themselves as an environmentally friendly business Reasons to Use Solar Power for Businesses Growing businesses opt for investing in commercial solar power mainly to aid in offsetting additional expenses. With the expansion of the business, electricity consumption will also increase. You can also time your roof repairs or new constructions to coincide with installing new solar panels. Transforming into a business that chooses to become carbon-neutral by utilizing solar energy will enhance your business image in the community. Implementing commercial solar panels cuts down your energy consumption and helps increase your savings. Excess energy generated by these solar panels can be stored with the help of off-grid batteries. Solar energy has a major drawback. Your company won't be powered at night or in severe weather conditions as solar only works during the day. Solar energy cannot handle the sudden power surges required to handle heavy machinery. Businesses are then forced to purchase and use commercial electricity to manage these spikes. However, these spikes can prove to be expensive. Merging photovoltaic systems with storage solutions can ease these spikes. This is vital during the "shoulder" hours when the sudden surge spikes can lead to demand charges. Benefits of Going Solar Reduction in Costs The single biggest advantage of going solar is a massive reduction in electricity bills. Locations where 'net metering' is available can become another source of revenue for your business as the excess power produced can be sold to your local utility. Businesses, and companies that rely on out of date energy sources like coal, could be paying 7 to 30 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh), whereas those using solar energy were paying between 2 to 12 cents per kWh. The benefits of switching to solar depend on several factors- locations, industry, and business size. The most advantageous enterprises would be the ones who have built an appropriately sized system to cover all energy requirements and enough power to fall back on during peak consumption hours. Businesses can incur additional charges due to demand and delivery. Utility services apply these charges to recover costs of purchasing energy and maintaining power lines and energy lost in the transmission system. Moving power sources closer to your business will help you avoidsuch preventable expenses. There are possibilities of ascension in solar energy projects. You can start with a smaller set of solar panels that would contribute to your daily energy needs and build it over time. You can always sell the excess energy produced to your local utility provider as a source of additional revenue. Federal Tax Incentives As of 2021, the investment tax credit (ITC) allows businesses to deduct 22 percent of the cost of installing solar energy systems from their federal tax with no cap on its value. These businesses are eligible for the tax incentive as long as they have their energy system. I'f youdon't have enough tax liability to claim the credit that year, the outstanding credits would roll over to the next year, so long the tax credit is in effect. Durability Like every other power source, solar has its limitations too. The infrastructure that can consume excess solar power is not yet up to the mark. Since solar is tied to the grid, they are interdependent. If the grid fails, solar goes down too. Therefore, it is important to add a microgrid to the energy system. Adding a micro-grid detaches your business from the utility providers and makes it independent of their services. It makes your organization what is known as an 'energy island'. The existence of these energy islands only protects your enterprise from power cuts due to natural disasters or any physical or hacking attacks. Your energy islands may also provide electricity to your local community during emergencies. Sustainability Solar energy has a massive role to play in the future of sustainability and environmental protection. By converting your business into a solar-powered business, you ensure the protection of the environment and reduce your company's carbon footprint on the planet. Studies also indicate that using solar energy for a long time also reduces utility costs. You can then invest the saved amount back into your business to promote advancements and innovations. Being a solar-powered business could be an alluring prospect for your potential business partners. Environment-inclined customers tend to turn to prefer "responsibly green" businesses, and these businesses also appease local and state regulators, governments, and hedge funds. Lower Maintenance Cost Another major reason solar power is beneficial for your business is low to zero maintenance of the installed solar panels. Agencies that provide solar panels offer a warranty of 20 to 25 years on them. Since solar panels have fewer movable parts, the chances of these parts disintegrating or rusting are highly unlikely as opposed to technology that relies on movable parts. Thus, switching to solar energy would be the appropriate step to take for your business. Things to Keep in Mind when Switching to Solar When investing in solar energy, there are a few imperatives that businesses must follow. No matter the size, your business must be located where there is adequate sunlight, a roof strong enough to sustain the panels, and be inclined to reduce the cost of all operations. There are various simple 'do-it-'yourself' kits launched in the market to entice small business owners to try and build these solar systems themselves. However, it is essential to work with a solar provider when installing solar panels to get the best outcome—as in any industrial field, consulting with a solar power expert would help you optimize costs and gain maximum benefits. Points to Explore Before Going Solar Amount of Electricity Consumed There are two main points to ponder over; "enough for one day" and "future years to come”. You could either sell excess energy produced to your local electricity supplier, which would add to your savings, or it could be stored with the help of li-ion batteries and utilized in the time of little to no sunshine. Financing Solar Power for Businesses Commercial solar power providers offer multiple business plans that would be best suited to the scale of your business. You can choose the better alternative for your business depending on how much discretionary cash you have and your solar infrastructure size. The size of the infrastructure will also depend on whether you want to gain dramatic results in terms of cost-saving or opt for low-cost start-ups and gain a more extended return on investment. Some enterprises buy solar equipment with cash or loans. This method would give you tax credits and incentives, thus offering you a higher return on investment (ROI). Another direction you could choose is going into a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with a solar energy provider and purchasing electricity from them at a lesser commercial cost. In a PPA, the developer looks after designing, permissions, financing, and installing the system for a meager amount. Details of your precise business requirements are vital to analyze the cost and time of ROI of the solar energy system. It would depend on the place you are at and the size of your system. To get these exact details, hire the best solar energy consultant for your exact needs. Important Steps to Remember Step 1: Outline your goals for a stable, sustainable, and financially sound future. Make sure that going solar is beneficial for your business. Calculate whether your region's utility costs are higher and hurt your business financially; whether there is ample storage space around your business to keep all the equipment. And whether adopting a green profile improves your goodwill in your local community. Step 2: Collect data on your electricity usage of at least one year to analyze the operating cost, energy spikes, and consumption patterns. Calculating business losses will aid in understanding the need to switch to solar energy. Step 3: Tie up with a commercial solar specialist when making the switch to solar energy. Often, customers fail to recognize the importance of this step. Avoid contractors who set up solar panels as a side business as they would not understand the intricacies of the job. Check all the references before you partner up with a specialist. Step 4: Last thing to keep in mind is thatgetting a solutions provider would make things easier for you. The provider will take care of everything- designing the system, finances, grid connection, and system maintenance. Ensure that you have a provider with sound support and has a portfolio of proven experience in solar infrastructure per your business needs. Frequently Asked Questions How much does solar cost? Ten years ago, the cost of a residential solar system was upwards of $50,000 for an average of 6 kilowatt-hour. Now, with a 62% average annual decrease, it ranges anywhere between $16,200 to $21,000. How does commercial solar work? Solar panels are made up of photovoltaic (PV) panels in a grid-like pattern that captures sunlight and converts it into electricity. The PV cells are made up of silicon with a positive and negative field that creates an electric field. Are commercial solar panels worth it? Commercial solar panels have a lifespan of 25-30 years. Although solar panels cost a lot initially, over the years, utility cost of your business will go down. There are also tax credits and incentives that the government offers when installing solar panels. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How much does solar cost?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Ten years ago, the cost of a residential solar system was upwards of $50,000 for an average of 6 kilowatt-hour. Now, with a 62% average annual decrease, it ranges anywhere between $16,200 to $21,000." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How does commercial solar work?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Solar panels are made up of photovoltaic (PV) panels in a grid-like pattern that captures sunlight and converts it into electricity. The PV cells are made up of silicon with a positive and negative field that creates an electric field." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Are commercial solar panels worth it?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Commercial solar panels have a lifespan of 25-30 years. Although solar panels cost a lot initially, over the years, utility cost of your business will go down. There are also tax credits and incentives that the government offers when installing solar panels." } }] }

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Energy, Industry Updates

Installation of a Solar System in 2021

Article | July 29, 2022

We’ve talked a bit about the functioning of solar panels, the mechanisms behind them, and the best panels suited for the average Indian household. Check them out for the starters. For this article, we’re detailing a complete guide to the components and installation of a solar system. Solar panels are all but a part of the complete setup of a functioning solar system. It is the basic building block of the system, but there’s more to it than just a silicon wafer panel. The other necessary components include Solar Inverters, Batteries (in a select type of system) and Panel Structure/Stands, and other accessories.

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Sustainability

Building a Clean and Green Smart Grid

Article | July 7, 2023

The evolution of smart grid and the transformation in the power sector? The concept of a Smart Grid has taken centre stage with an evolution of Solar, Wind energy sources, advanced technologies such as AI/ML , Energy storage , introduction of Electric vehicles, sensors that transmit real time data all of which make a smarter, more efficient electrical power grid possible. In contrast the Existing grid is facing some complex challenges that include integrating renewable energy, Cyber security, high losses, unable to support large Electric vehicle penetration and empowering consumers to become power producers. It is time for India to make this paradigm shift that touches right from Generation, Transmission, Distribution and consumption. So, the first step would be the installation of smart meters and Advanced Metering infrastructure which is a key component of the smart grid. The roll out of smart meters has already started and integrating other pieces into this smart meter value chain and other building blocks. This new metering system enables two-way flow of information between consumers and utilities and improve the overall grid operations, cost efficient and support large scale penetration of Electric vehicles. A major transformation is underway and utilities need to develop their roadmap for creating a modern Smart Grid. Solar is seeing low tariffs and what one can interpret from these solar tariff trends? In the last one year, more than 10GW worth of solar projects are auctioned and tariffs discovered are between Rs2 to Rs 2.5. These low tariffs are result of many factors that include aggressive bidding, entry of foreign players, and expectation that module prices will further fall. Also this Covid pandemic has shrink the economy, thus there are fewer tenders from the govt. with more developers chasing fewer tenders to stay in the race. These low prices put enormous pressure on EPC companies and Module suppliers to deliver at these rock bottom prices. These bids take into account the low prices of Chinese imports, now with BCD (Basic custom duty) in force from April 2022 it will be challenging for power producers to continue executing projects at such low prices. Another concern is the delay in signing PPA’s (Power purchase agreements) by Discoms. PPA’s once signed are valid for the entire term of PPA which is usually 25 years. But given the tender tariffs falling every few months, Discoms prefer to wait and delay the signing or renegotiate the existing PPA, dampening the investor confidence and threatening the viability of the Projects. In these circumstances the role of regulatory oversight increases to protect the interests of all the stakeholders. However, in the coming years technology improvements with addition of energy storage and better forecasting techniques, Solar would become the major source and also the cheapest source. So sunny days ahead of solar. The decentralized solar and innovative business models and financing? In the current system of centralized power system, a large power plant produces power, transmits, and distributes it among industries and homes. This process is inefficient as some of the electricity is lost in transmission and distribution. A De-centralized solar is more efficient to generate and consume power locally. It also helps create small businesses and technicians to build and maintain these solar plants. Also as Solar and battery systems increase and become more economical Peer to Peer energy trading is possible where consumers become prosumers (both producers and consumers) and sell their excess power to their peers. This next generation Energy Management and Peer-to-Peer Energy trading facilitates buy and sell orders just like share trading stock exchange. The Energy trading platform maps the buyers and sellers as per their bids and settles the trades. By introducing Block chain technology for energy trading further reduces the transaction costs. The possible business models would be Community based Solar plants where rooftops and open spaces could be used to generate power and trade. All of this result in less losses and brings the much needed dynamism in the distribution of energy. Role of AI and data analytics in the energy sector? The Power sector generates large amounts of data from various nodes on the grid and unfortunately most of this data go unanalysed due to lack of infrastructure and domain expertise. But now with the maturity in data management systems and two-way communication enabling real time data from various components of the grid giving latest and integrated snapshot of the entire power system, it is possible through the application of AI to provide services such as Fault detection, Predictive maintenance, Power quality Monitoring, and Renewable energy forecasting. Many discoms are plagued by theft of power and Cyberattacks. The recent Cyber attack on Maharashtra power grid is an example that caused massive power outage in Mumbai last October plunging the city into darkness. By using the power of AI/ML, algorithms can be trained to detect any attack based on certain attributes. As soon as the attack is detected an alert is sent to the security engineers to bring the system to safety mode. In addition, Smart meters with pre-paid mechanism are expected to be deployed for remote meter reading and accurate billing thus preventing revenue loss. AI/ML has the potential to cut energy waste, lower energy costs, and bring more operation efficiencies for the utilities. Strategies in EV charging and integration with smart grid? EV’s are promising solution to cut greenhouse gas emissions, reduce the cost of transportation and improving the health of citizens. The emerging business models are Public charging stations, third party owned operated charging station, and owner operated charging station. However, the ground reality is far fewer EV’s are running on road due to higher cost, Range anxiety, and long charging times. So, there is need to work closely with all the stakeholders right from utilities, Regulatory bodies, Car manufacturers, charging station operators to expedite the process of EV related infrastructure and incentivize customers to adapt to EV’s rather than convention vehicles. In your question you asked about integration with smart grid and this is a term that captures the shift from basic to smart charging. A smart grid is key to smart EV charging as large number of EV charging at same time can degrade grid performance causing voltage and frequency fluctuations and cause peak power demand or sudden drop in demand. With smart grid in place it is possible to do load balancing, adjust charging patterns and avoid peaking of power. Also one more challenge is there are 3 competing standards and India should define its own standards and enable charging of any vehicle at any charging station. This interoperability is possible by developing standards for front–end and back-end communication and signalling process between Electric vehicles and charging stations and the grid that supplies the power. Smart grid is essential for large deployments of EV’s. Investment opportunities and job creation in this transformation to clean power? Covid has changed the entire investment paradigm and made all of us Environmentally conscious. This is wake up call to prioritize a more sustainable approach to investment in companies that are high on Environmental, Social and Governance score. The recent momentum in ESG investment with more than 3,300 ESG funds is an indication that businesses that demonstrate business ethics, transparency, Sustainability benefit companies and investors and attract best talent too. The spectacular rise of share price of Tesla is a clear message from investors on clean energy and EV transportation. As the world is getting serious India has a catching up to do from the findings of Refinitiv on ESG. As Asset managers, Pension funds, Oil and Gas companies evaluate their exposure to fossil based energy sources and switch towards clean energy this is going to create new Green jobs. These new Green jobs range from retrofitting homes with solar panels, providing home based charging stations, energy efficient appliances, Solid waste mgmt, e-waste mgmt. Similarly, Smart cities, Green buildings, greening of enterprises can be achieved by training the work force on these new concepts and driving investments towards job creation and sustainability. In summary, power sector is in for a major transformation and utilities, industries need to tap the right talent to deal with this disruption and reap immense benefits.

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Energy, Industry Updates

Energy Management: An Energy Strategy for the C-Suite

Article | July 29, 2022

Every year, large corporations spend millions, if not billions, of dollars on energy—and millions more on supply chain, outsourcing, and logistical expenditures. Outside of the most energy-intensive sectors, however, the majority of businesses regard energy as just a cost to be managed. This is a strategic error that misses out on the significant potential to decrease risk, boost resilience, and generate new value. Today, energy is moving up the corporate agenda as a result of broad environmental, social, and economic developments, such as climate change and global carbon regulation, growing demands on natural resources, increased standards for corporate environmental performance, advances in energy technology and business models, and dropping costs for renewable energy sources. These major trends alter the environment in which businesses operate, exposing them to new risks and value-generating opportunities. PWC surveyed major commercial and industrial enterprises based in the United States and discovered that 72% are actively exploring new renewable energy acquisitions in order to decrease emissions (85%), produce an attractive ROI (76%), and mitigate the risks related to energy price volatility (59%). Corporate energy is a focus. Organizations in all sectors—and particularly those with large energy footprints—are encouraged to implement a C-suite strategy for energy management developed around the key points mentioned below. Make Energy Management a C-Suite Priority. If energy is to get the attention it requires in order to have an effect, its significance must be conveyed from the top down. This will require the CEO to designate energy management as one of the company's top objectives and delegate strategy development and implementation to the COO, CFO, or other executives. Embrace Renewable Energy Technologies Technology advancements, coupled with government incentives, have driven down the cost of sustainable energy. LED lighting, solar energy, wind energy, and the batteries that enable intermittent renewables, for example, have all come down in price in recent years, making these technologies more economical than before. This is significant since alternative energy solutions can provide enormous advantages to businesses, such as preparing them for future requirements, enabling them to continue operations in the case of a power loss, and strengthening their image as an environmentally conscientious brand (for CRE, this. As a result, every business energy management plan should contain a directive to adopt renewable and alternative energies at every opportunity. Strategize Using Risk and Opportunity The risk and opportunity factors connected to its sourcing and consumption should serve as the foundation for the company's energy management strategy. This calls for a comprehensive grasp of the company's present energy costs and the potential benefits of change. Therefore, while creating an energy management plan, businesses should think about how they can: Calculate and cut down on variable energy bills. Energy costs should be adjusted to improve the value and reduce expenses. Increase the amount of renewable energy they utilize. Reduce their carbon footprint. Select suppliers that exhibit a dedication to eco-friendly operations. Integrate energy strategy into the organization's goals and daily activities. Make a public strategy to achieve strict emission and energy use goals. Closing Lines Competitive edge drivers are constantly evolving. Not a long time ago, "quality" was a fringe philosophy, and IT was just a cost center. Quality is no longer optional, and understanding big data is essential. Energy is taking a similar path. What was previously buried deep inside procurement is now emerging to take its position among the fundamental drivers of corporate success.

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Spotlight

Swell Energy

Swell is a California-based residential energy storage developer and aggregator. Swell offers consumers bundled solutions including energy storage, solar, and energy management to save homeowners money and provide smart, clean, and secure home energy. Swell also works with utilities to develop residential energy storage programs that address specified utility needs. Most recently, Swell secured a 20 MWh, 3,000-home program with Southern California Edison, the largest residential storage fleet ever announced.

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Solar+Storage,Sustainability

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions enters Mississippi with acquisition of 100-MW Wildflower Solar from Clearway Energy Group

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions | November 23, 2022

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions is expanding its solar energy portfolio by acquiring the 100-megawatt (MW) Wildflower Solar project from Clearway Energy Group. The solar project will generate enough energy to power approximately 21,000 homes. Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions* is a non-regulated commercial brand of Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK). The site, which is expected to begin full construction in late 2022 and achieve commercial operation in late 2023, is located in Desoto County, MS. It will be the first Mississippi based renewable energy project for Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions. Toyota North America has signed a 15-year virtual power purchase agreement for up to 80 MWs of the solar energy produced by the project. The agreement will financially settle on an as-generated basis tied to the project's real-time energy output. Wildflower Solar, which is located in proximity to Toyota's manufacturing facility in Mississippi, will help the automotive manufacturer replace the high emission electricity used in its operations with zero emissions renewable electricity on the grid. The move represents another major step towards Toyota's goal of achieving carbon neutrality in its operations by 2035. "We're excited to continue to expand our commercial solar portfolio and enter into the Mississippi market, which will build upon the area's clean energy resources, Once complete, Wildflower Solar will further diversify Mississippi's energy infrastructure, while also reducing Toyota's emissions from its North American operations." -Chris Fallon, president of Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions. Our collective future depends on clean mobility, clean air, clean water and biodiversity, said Kevin Butt, director of sustainability for Toyota Motor North America. Renewable energy sources, like solar, are a key to achieving our goal of carbon neutrality and our purchase from Wildflower alone has the potential to reduce Toyota's carbon footprint in North America by as much as 8 percent. Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions will own and operate the project, which is expected to employ 300 at peak construction. Along with indirect economic benefits that accompany solar project development, such as increased local spending in the service and construction industries, the Wildflower Solar facility will also have a positive economic impact on the local community by providing significant tax revenues for the Mississippi public schools. As one of the nation's top renewable energy providers, Duke Energy has more than 10,500 MW of solar and wind energy. About Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions is a leader in sustainable energy, helping large enterprises reduce power costs, lower emissions and increase resiliency. The team provides wind, solar, resilient backup power and managed energy services to over 1,000 projects across the U.S., with a total electric capacity of more than 5,100 megawatts of nonregulated renewable energy. Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions is a nonregulated commercial brand of Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company and one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S., headquartered in Charlotte, N.C. The brand includes the following subsidiaries of Duke Energy Corporation that are registered to transact business in various states and may be branded as Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions for marketing purposes: Duke Energy One, Inc.; Duke Energy Commercial Enterprises, Inc.; Duke Energy Renewables, Inc.; Duke Energy Renewables Commercial, LLC; Duke Energy Renewable Services, LLC.; Duke Energy Renewables Storage, LLC; Duke Energy Renewables Wind, LLC.; Duke Energy Renewables Solar, LLC.; and REC Solar Commercial Corporation. About Clearway Energy Group Clearway Energy Group is leading the transition to a world powered by clean energy. Along with our public affiliate Clearway Energy, Inc., we own and operate more than 8 gigawatts of renewable and conventional energy assets across the country. As we develop a nationwide pipeline of new renewable energy projects for one future, Clearway's 5.7 gigawatts of wind, solar and energy storage assets offset the equivalent of more than 10.5 million metric tons of carbon emissions for our customers today. Clearway Energy Group is headquartered in San Francisco with offices in Carlsbad, California; Scottsdale, Arizona; Houston; and Princeton, N.J. For more information, visit clearwayenergygroup.com About Toyota Toyota (NYSE:TM), creator of the Prius hybrid and the Mirai fuel cell vehicle, is committed to building vehicles for the way people live through our Toyota and Lexus brands. Over the past 60 years, we've built more than 40 million cars and trucks in North America, where we have 14 manufacturing plants, 15 including our joint venture in Alabama (10 in the U.S.), and directly employ more than 47,000 people (over 36,000 in the U.S.). Our 1,800 North American dealerships (nearly 1,500 in the U.S.) sold more than 2.4 million cars and trucks (more than 2.1 million in the U.S.) in 2020.

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Strategy and Best Practices

IUCN and Huawei Both Push for a Greater Use of Technology to Protect the Environment

IUCN | June 07, 2022

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Huawei, and conservation project partners joined forces to urge for a greater global push to develop and implement innovative technologies to better safeguard the environment. The two partners held an online summit called "Tech for a Better Planet" to show how technology may dramatically improve nature conservation outcomes, as well as to introduce new digital technologies that are poised to become critical enablers of environmental protection. The process of responding to environmental concerns has raised awareness of the importance of technology in nature protection. "We believe that digital technology is a key enabler of environmental protection, All sectors of society should work together within an open and collaborative market environment to apply technological innovations to industries and transform new technologies into solutions and services that can help build a green planet." -Tao Jingwen, Director of the Board and Director of the Corporate Sustainable Development Committee for Huawei. Huawei supports the worldwide zero-carbon journey by promoting green development in industries through ICT breakthroughs. To speed the development of renewable energy, the company has merged power electronics and digital technology on the energy supply side. In terms of energy consumption, Huawei will continue to develop energy-saving technologies to improve the energy efficiency of ICT infrastructure, saving energy and lowering emissions in the process. Huawei has also created long-term partnerships to improve nature conservation outcomes by developing technology solutions that can better comprehend nature and lead to more effective biodiversity protection measures in a variety of environments. IUCN and Huawei started the global Tech4Nature project in 2020, and have since launched pilot programs in Switzerland, Spain, China, Mexico, and Mauritius based on the IUCN Green List Standard. IUCN, Huawei, and the Ecomode Society deployed the first underwater system in the Western Indian Ocean to monitor coral reef ecosystems in real time off the coast of Mauritius. The project's goal is to rebuild seriously threatened coral reef ecosystems by growing live coral in nurseries, transplanting it, and tracking growth, water conditions, and dangers such as algae. Underwater cameras with unique lenses, sensors, a 4G network to transport data, and AI to analyse the results are all part of the solution. Nearly 10,000 coral fragments have been transplanted to deteriorated reefs to date, with a total of 25,000 expected by the end of 2022.

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Solar+Storage

Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure (GSI) Announces Utility Scale Deal with AquaSan to Provide Up to 233 MW in New Solar Capacity to Five U.S. States

Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure | March 03, 2022

Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure (GSI) announced it has taken a step towards providing more affordable, reliable, and clean access to energy for Americans. The North American solar energy investment and development subsidiary of the Libra Group announced that it has acquired a scalable portfolio of solar developments from AquaSan Network-subsidiary CMDAJ Holdings LLC (CMDAJ). This acquisition positions GSI to provide up to 233 megawatt (MW) in affordable, utility scale solar energy to new markets, including Minnesota, Colorado, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Wisconsin. Initially, GSI will develop 40 MW of early-stage utility scale solar developments in Minnesota, with the option to build an additional 193 MW in Colorado, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Wisconsin, doubling its current footprint to 10 U.S. states. Following this transaction, Libra Group subsidiaries, including GSI, will be close to reaching the one-gigawatt development mark, proving 950 MW in solar, wind and waste-to-energy with over 220 projects owned, currently under development, or previously developed in six countries. These developments will provide power to a combination of regulated utilities, investor-owned utilities and U.S. businesses allowing them to purchase solar energy to meet clean energy goals and lock in reduced electricity costs. The portfolio will increase access to reliable, clean energy and promote local job creation and the provision of clean, reliable and renewable water. We were proud to partner with CMDAJ, a team of experienced renewable energy and water project developers in Denver Colorado, to complete this deal which will increase access to reliable, clean energy and promote local job creation. The company and this transaction represent a key part of the Libra Group's commitment to renewable energy in the Americas and around the world." Camilo Patrignani, Libra Group EVP of Energy The U.S. renewable energy market is a multibillion-dollar sector. A global focus on clean power, where many U.S. developers lead the field, has given rise to new solutions with improved technology offering greater efficiencies year upon year. The assets from this deal will be co-owned and co-developed by the GSI and CMDAJ partnership. Once the projects are ready to build, GSI plans to construct and operate the power plants. "This is a very exciting announcement that will cement GSI's growth plans hand in hand with CMDAJ, and continue to support and advance the nation's transition to a reliable, clean energy future," said Mazen Turk, GSI CEO. "Since the start of operations in 2010, GSI has developed and built over 32 renewable energy assets and this acquisition furthers our exposure to the utility scale energy segment." "CMDAJ's team has developed over 2 gigawatts of thermal, solar, biomass and wind projects over the last 20 years and this partnership will enable us to expand our development portfolio and vertically integrate our efforts in renewable energy and water" said Carmine Iadarola, CEO of CMDAJ and AquaSan Network, Inc. About Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure and Libra Group Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure is one of the clean energy subsidiaries of the Libra Group, a privately-owned international business group spanning 35 countries across six continents and active in renewable energy, aviation, hospitality, real estate and shipping as well as selected diversified investments. GSI is focused investment, development, and operation of both distributed generation and utility-scale solar energy projects in North America. As of January 2022, the company developed approximately 200 MW in 32 renewable energy projects, many of which are still owned or operated by GSI. Recent partners include DTE Energy, Delmarva Power, and Duke Energy. Its sister company, Greenwood Energy Latinoamérica, is currently developing or managing close to 100 MW of on-site solar energy systems for public and private sector organizations wishing to offset their energy costs in Latin America, including the first utility-scale project in Panama. The Libra Group also owns Convergen Latvia, operating three biogas plants in Latvia and EuroEnergy, which operates solar and wind farms across Europe. About CMDAJ and AquaSan AquaSan was formed in 1983 by its current CEO Carmine Iadarola to provide administrative and technical services for the water infrastructure business. Over time, Aquasan got involved in the development of renewable energy projects as well and since then had developed 1,100 MWs of natural gas power, 1,000 MWs of wind, and 500 MWs of solar. AquaSan is a family owned business that employs 5 people and has rendered services to companies like Nextera, GCL, Xcel, Dominion, Pine Gate, Candela, Google, Kiewit and others.

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Solar+Storage,Sustainability

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions enters Mississippi with acquisition of 100-MW Wildflower Solar from Clearway Energy Group

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions | November 23, 2022

Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions is expanding its solar energy portfolio by acquiring the 100-megawatt (MW) Wildflower Solar project from Clearway Energy Group. The solar project will generate enough energy to power approximately 21,000 homes. Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions* is a non-regulated commercial brand of Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK). The site, which is expected to begin full construction in late 2022 and achieve commercial operation in late 2023, is located in Desoto County, MS. It will be the first Mississippi based renewable energy project for Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions. Toyota North America has signed a 15-year virtual power purchase agreement for up to 80 MWs of the solar energy produced by the project. The agreement will financially settle on an as-generated basis tied to the project's real-time energy output. Wildflower Solar, which is located in proximity to Toyota's manufacturing facility in Mississippi, will help the automotive manufacturer replace the high emission electricity used in its operations with zero emissions renewable electricity on the grid. The move represents another major step towards Toyota's goal of achieving carbon neutrality in its operations by 2035. "We're excited to continue to expand our commercial solar portfolio and enter into the Mississippi market, which will build upon the area's clean energy resources, Once complete, Wildflower Solar will further diversify Mississippi's energy infrastructure, while also reducing Toyota's emissions from its North American operations." -Chris Fallon, president of Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions. Our collective future depends on clean mobility, clean air, clean water and biodiversity, said Kevin Butt, director of sustainability for Toyota Motor North America. Renewable energy sources, like solar, are a key to achieving our goal of carbon neutrality and our purchase from Wildflower alone has the potential to reduce Toyota's carbon footprint in North America by as much as 8 percent. Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions will own and operate the project, which is expected to employ 300 at peak construction. Along with indirect economic benefits that accompany solar project development, such as increased local spending in the service and construction industries, the Wildflower Solar facility will also have a positive economic impact on the local community by providing significant tax revenues for the Mississippi public schools. As one of the nation's top renewable energy providers, Duke Energy has more than 10,500 MW of solar and wind energy. About Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions is a leader in sustainable energy, helping large enterprises reduce power costs, lower emissions and increase resiliency. The team provides wind, solar, resilient backup power and managed energy services to over 1,000 projects across the U.S., with a total electric capacity of more than 5,100 megawatts of nonregulated renewable energy. Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions is a nonregulated commercial brand of Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company and one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S., headquartered in Charlotte, N.C. The brand includes the following subsidiaries of Duke Energy Corporation that are registered to transact business in various states and may be branded as Duke Energy Sustainable Solutions for marketing purposes: Duke Energy One, Inc.; Duke Energy Commercial Enterprises, Inc.; Duke Energy Renewables, Inc.; Duke Energy Renewables Commercial, LLC; Duke Energy Renewable Services, LLC.; Duke Energy Renewables Storage, LLC; Duke Energy Renewables Wind, LLC.; Duke Energy Renewables Solar, LLC.; and REC Solar Commercial Corporation. About Clearway Energy Group Clearway Energy Group is leading the transition to a world powered by clean energy. Along with our public affiliate Clearway Energy, Inc., we own and operate more than 8 gigawatts of renewable and conventional energy assets across the country. As we develop a nationwide pipeline of new renewable energy projects for one future, Clearway's 5.7 gigawatts of wind, solar and energy storage assets offset the equivalent of more than 10.5 million metric tons of carbon emissions for our customers today. Clearway Energy Group is headquartered in San Francisco with offices in Carlsbad, California; Scottsdale, Arizona; Houston; and Princeton, N.J. For more information, visit clearwayenergygroup.com About Toyota Toyota (NYSE:TM), creator of the Prius hybrid and the Mirai fuel cell vehicle, is committed to building vehicles for the way people live through our Toyota and Lexus brands. Over the past 60 years, we've built more than 40 million cars and trucks in North America, where we have 14 manufacturing plants, 15 including our joint venture in Alabama (10 in the U.S.), and directly employ more than 47,000 people (over 36,000 in the U.S.). Our 1,800 North American dealerships (nearly 1,500 in the U.S.) sold more than 2.4 million cars and trucks (more than 2.1 million in the U.S.) in 2020.

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Strategy and Best Practices

IUCN and Huawei Both Push for a Greater Use of Technology to Protect the Environment

IUCN | June 07, 2022

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Huawei, and conservation project partners joined forces to urge for a greater global push to develop and implement innovative technologies to better safeguard the environment. The two partners held an online summit called "Tech for a Better Planet" to show how technology may dramatically improve nature conservation outcomes, as well as to introduce new digital technologies that are poised to become critical enablers of environmental protection. The process of responding to environmental concerns has raised awareness of the importance of technology in nature protection. "We believe that digital technology is a key enabler of environmental protection, All sectors of society should work together within an open and collaborative market environment to apply technological innovations to industries and transform new technologies into solutions and services that can help build a green planet." -Tao Jingwen, Director of the Board and Director of the Corporate Sustainable Development Committee for Huawei. Huawei supports the worldwide zero-carbon journey by promoting green development in industries through ICT breakthroughs. To speed the development of renewable energy, the company has merged power electronics and digital technology on the energy supply side. In terms of energy consumption, Huawei will continue to develop energy-saving technologies to improve the energy efficiency of ICT infrastructure, saving energy and lowering emissions in the process. Huawei has also created long-term partnerships to improve nature conservation outcomes by developing technology solutions that can better comprehend nature and lead to more effective biodiversity protection measures in a variety of environments. IUCN and Huawei started the global Tech4Nature project in 2020, and have since launched pilot programs in Switzerland, Spain, China, Mexico, and Mauritius based on the IUCN Green List Standard. IUCN, Huawei, and the Ecomode Society deployed the first underwater system in the Western Indian Ocean to monitor coral reef ecosystems in real time off the coast of Mauritius. The project's goal is to rebuild seriously threatened coral reef ecosystems by growing live coral in nurseries, transplanting it, and tracking growth, water conditions, and dangers such as algae. Underwater cameras with unique lenses, sensors, a 4G network to transport data, and AI to analyse the results are all part of the solution. Nearly 10,000 coral fragments have been transplanted to deteriorated reefs to date, with a total of 25,000 expected by the end of 2022.

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Solar+Storage

Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure (GSI) Announces Utility Scale Deal with AquaSan to Provide Up to 233 MW in New Solar Capacity to Five U.S. States

Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure | March 03, 2022

Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure (GSI) announced it has taken a step towards providing more affordable, reliable, and clean access to energy for Americans. The North American solar energy investment and development subsidiary of the Libra Group announced that it has acquired a scalable portfolio of solar developments from AquaSan Network-subsidiary CMDAJ Holdings LLC (CMDAJ). This acquisition positions GSI to provide up to 233 megawatt (MW) in affordable, utility scale solar energy to new markets, including Minnesota, Colorado, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Wisconsin. Initially, GSI will develop 40 MW of early-stage utility scale solar developments in Minnesota, with the option to build an additional 193 MW in Colorado, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Wisconsin, doubling its current footprint to 10 U.S. states. Following this transaction, Libra Group subsidiaries, including GSI, will be close to reaching the one-gigawatt development mark, proving 950 MW in solar, wind and waste-to-energy with over 220 projects owned, currently under development, or previously developed in six countries. These developments will provide power to a combination of regulated utilities, investor-owned utilities and U.S. businesses allowing them to purchase solar energy to meet clean energy goals and lock in reduced electricity costs. The portfolio will increase access to reliable, clean energy and promote local job creation and the provision of clean, reliable and renewable water. We were proud to partner with CMDAJ, a team of experienced renewable energy and water project developers in Denver Colorado, to complete this deal which will increase access to reliable, clean energy and promote local job creation. The company and this transaction represent a key part of the Libra Group's commitment to renewable energy in the Americas and around the world." Camilo Patrignani, Libra Group EVP of Energy The U.S. renewable energy market is a multibillion-dollar sector. A global focus on clean power, where many U.S. developers lead the field, has given rise to new solutions with improved technology offering greater efficiencies year upon year. The assets from this deal will be co-owned and co-developed by the GSI and CMDAJ partnership. Once the projects are ready to build, GSI plans to construct and operate the power plants. "This is a very exciting announcement that will cement GSI's growth plans hand in hand with CMDAJ, and continue to support and advance the nation's transition to a reliable, clean energy future," said Mazen Turk, GSI CEO. "Since the start of operations in 2010, GSI has developed and built over 32 renewable energy assets and this acquisition furthers our exposure to the utility scale energy segment." "CMDAJ's team has developed over 2 gigawatts of thermal, solar, biomass and wind projects over the last 20 years and this partnership will enable us to expand our development portfolio and vertically integrate our efforts in renewable energy and water" said Carmine Iadarola, CEO of CMDAJ and AquaSan Network, Inc. About Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure and Libra Group Greenwood Sustainable Infrastructure is one of the clean energy subsidiaries of the Libra Group, a privately-owned international business group spanning 35 countries across six continents and active in renewable energy, aviation, hospitality, real estate and shipping as well as selected diversified investments. GSI is focused investment, development, and operation of both distributed generation and utility-scale solar energy projects in North America. As of January 2022, the company developed approximately 200 MW in 32 renewable energy projects, many of which are still owned or operated by GSI. Recent partners include DTE Energy, Delmarva Power, and Duke Energy. Its sister company, Greenwood Energy Latinoamérica, is currently developing or managing close to 100 MW of on-site solar energy systems for public and private sector organizations wishing to offset their energy costs in Latin America, including the first utility-scale project in Panama. The Libra Group also owns Convergen Latvia, operating three biogas plants in Latvia and EuroEnergy, which operates solar and wind farms across Europe. About CMDAJ and AquaSan AquaSan was formed in 1983 by its current CEO Carmine Iadarola to provide administrative and technical services for the water infrastructure business. Over time, Aquasan got involved in the development of renewable energy projects as well and since then had developed 1,100 MWs of natural gas power, 1,000 MWs of wind, and 500 MWs of solar. AquaSan is a family owned business that employs 5 people and has rendered services to companies like Nextera, GCL, Xcel, Dominion, Pine Gate, Candela, Google, Kiewit and others.

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