Investing in Renewable Energy Market in the Americas-Beyond Obama
The United States has been very vocal about its commitment to a renewable energy future. The Obama administration has already declared a 2012 budget of $8 billion for renewable energy research and development, specifically in solar, wind and battery technologies. The administration has created a target of 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2015, and wants 80 percent of the country’s electricity to be derived from clean energy sources by 2035. Various tax incentives are already in place for investment in renewable energy in the U.S., and more incentives are likely on the horizon.
The U.S. isn’t the only American country drawing big investment in renewables. Canada has maintained its position amongst the top 10 countries in the world for investor attractiveness in renewable energy. Various grants and tax incentives have been made available to investors, particularly in the biofuel and energy retrofitting arenas.
In South America, Brazil remains as one of the top 20 countries in the world for renewable energy investment. Approximately 85 percent of Brazil’s energy comes from renewable resources, particularly solar and hydroelectric power, and the country is rapidly attracting new investment. Chile too has one of the most appealing environments for renewable energy investors, offering open access to its energy sector and transmission lines. Certain non-conventional renewable energy projects are exempt from transmission charges. Grants and carbon credits are available, and the Chilean government even enacted a law in 2008 requiring electrical companies to incorporate a percentage renewable energy into their electricity sales.
As you can see, the Americas are poised for some heavy investment in renewables in coming years, and as a potential investor, it is absolutely necessary to have all the facts in regard to trends, figures, and the current economic environment—not to mention knowing which countries are attracting what kinds of renewable projects. To have these questions answered and more, check out “The Sustainable Technology Investment Market Update-The Americas.”
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.