Clean energy stocks up 16.9% as fossil fuels fall
With the Carbon Clean 200 index having been set up in a collaboration of non-profit organisations You Sow and Corporate Knights in August 2016, the index has revealed the performance of the clean energy industry for its first full year through June 2017.
Whilst the S&P Energy index showed fossils fuels declining by 1.2%, the Carbon Clean index showed clean energy rising by 16.9% in the same period, with the top five companies on the list being Siemens, Toyota, Schneider Electric, ABB and Panasonic.
To qualify for the list, companies must produce at least 10% of their revenue from clean energy, with oil and gas companies and those that generate less than 50% of their energy resources automatically excluded from the index.
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The report has not only revealed the success of clean energy, making strides in the global stock market, but also the decline of non-renewable energy sources.
Coal is falling particularly rapidly due to its high contribution to emissions (40%), as well as its uncompetitive price, now being usurped by renewable sources.
Petrol is expected to eventually follow, with predictions that electric cars will be cheaper to run than traditional ones in the coming year.
China has been revealed as the hub of clean energy, with 68 of the 200 companies on the index originating from the country, compared to 34 in the US.
Toyota unveils electric van and Volvo opens fuel cell lab
Toyota is launching its first zero emission battery electric vehicle, the Proace Electric medium-duty panel van, across Europe.
The model, which offers a choice of 50 or 75kWh lithium-ion batteries with range of up to 205 miles, is being rolled out in the UK, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Sweden.
At present, alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs, including battery electric vehicles) account for only a fraction – around 1.8 per cent – of new light commercial van sales in the UK, but a number of factors are accelerating demand for practical alternatives to vans with conventional internal combustion engines.
Low and zero emission zones are coming into force to reduce local pollution and improve air quality in urban centres, at the same time as rapid growth in ecommerce is generating more day-to-day delivery traffic.
Meanwhile the opening of Volvo's first dedicated fuel cell test lab in Volvo Group, marks a significant milestone in the manufacturer’s ambition to be fossil-free by 2040.
Fuel cells work by combining hydrogen with oxygen, with the resulting chemical reaction producing electricity. The process is completely emission-free, with water vapour being the only by-product.
Toni Hagelberg, Head of Sustainable Power at Volvo CE, says fuel cell technology is a key enabler of sustainable solutions for heavier construction machines, and this investment provides another vital tool in its work to reach targets.
"The lab will also serve Volvo Group globally, as it’s the first to offer this kind of advanced testing," he said.
The Fuel Cell Test Lab is a demonstration of the same dedication to hydrogen fuel cell technology, as the recent launch of cell centric, a joint venture by Volvo Group and Daimler Truck to accelerate the development, production and commercialization of fuel cell solutions within long-haul trucking and beyond. Both form a key part of the Group’s overall ambition to be 100% fossil free by 2040.