U.S. states often tussle over who can attract the most innovative, high-growth businesses. Governors can increasingly point to a new factor that makes their state competitive: affordable renewable energy.
The number of green tariffs, or renewable energy purchasing programs offered by utilities, has doubled in the United States since the end of 2015. Part of the reason is demand from corporations seeking more access to wind and solar.
Bangalore’s Kempegowda International Airport plans to become the largest solar-producing airport in India, generating 14.6 megawatts (MW) of solar power. That's enough to offset 17,000 tons of carbon dioxide, the equivalent of taking more than 3,200 vehicles off the road each year.
"No one's actually making money from coal-fired power plants in the United States right now," said David Crane at WRI's MindShare event. That may seem a strange sentiment coming from a man who led NRG Energy, one of America's biggest power companies, but Crane is far from the typical energy exec.
As the price of clean power continues to fall, large companies are looking to move beyond just purchasing renewable energy certificates in order to reap the benefits of utility-scale renewable projects. Priya Barua explains how green tariffs can help speed the transition.
Large, private sector energy customers wanting to buy more renewable energy are already driving change in electricity markets by scaling up clean power delivered through the grid. More renewables in countries’ power grids will accelerate progress toward emissions-reduction targets put forth in Paris.
If successful, the new international climate agreement forged in Paris will send strong signals to financial markets—and therefore to businesses and investors—about the direction of energy for the foreseeable future.