World Energy Solutions (XWES) and Ram Power (RPG.TO) Appear Promising

From Small Fries to Big Shots? Part 1 of 2 by Bill Paul Feel like rolling the dice on some small alternative energy stocks that appear to have big-time potential? Just remember: sometimes you roll snake eyes. First up: World Energy Solutions Inc. (Symbol: XWES), which currently trades on NASDAQ for $3 and change per share. Worcester, MA-based World Energy Solutions operates online exchanges for energy and green commodities, including the one administered by Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative Inc. (RGGI), the regulatory scheme under which 10 Northeastern and Middle Atlantic states "cap" their power plants' emissions by requiring...

Geothermal Companies Receive Cost Sharing Grants from DOE

Tom Konrad CFA My entire portfolio of Geothermal companies received DOE cost-sharing grants Friday.  Here's a quick run-down: Nevada Geothermal (NGLPF.PK, NGP.V) received $1.7M for its Crump Geyser project, and $1.6M for its Black Warrior project. NGP also celebrated completion of  its Blue Mountain Faulkner 1 plant the same day. US Geothermal (HTM) received $3.77M for it San Emidio project. Sierra Geothermal (SRAGF.PK, SRA.V) received $10M for exploration at its Alum and Silver Peak projects.  Ormat (ORA) received two grants, and is likely to benefit from other grants since geothermal exploration companies such as US Geothermal contract with...

What A Portfolio Approach To Climate Policy Means for Your Stock Portfolio

Portfolio theory can lend insights into which carbon abatement strategies policymakers should pursue.  If policymakers listen, what will it mean for green investors? Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA Good Info, Not Enough Analysis I've now read most of my review copy of Investment Opportunities for a Low Carbon World.  The quality of the information is generally excellent, as Charles has described in his reviews of the Wind and Solar and Efficiency and Geothermal chapters.  As a resource on the state of Cleantech industries, it's generally excellent.  As an investing resource, however, it leaves something to be desired.  Each chapter is written...

Book Review: Investment Opportunities for a Low Carbon World (Geothermal + Efficiency)

Charles Morand Last Thursday, I reviewed two chapters from the recently published book "Investment Opportunities for a Low Carbon World"*. This post reviews two more.  Geothermal Energy Alexander Richter, Glitnir Bank (now Íslandsbanki) Geothermal is one of the most interesting forms of clean power generation there is. As noted by the author, the most convincing argument for geothermal electricity is the fact that it operates at capacity factors in the upper 90s. This makes it the only renewable technology suitable for baseload power with the exception of dam-based (i.e. large-scale) hydro. However, as...

Just Sold: Raser Technologies (RZ)

Raser Technologies (NYSE:RZ) did not get the hoped-for DOE loan guarantee.   The company still has good long term prospects, but the short term upside chances are much weaker, prompting me to sell in the hope of buying back in after a general market sell-off. Raser Technologies (NYSE:RZ) dropped from $2.10 to $1.95 on September 1st, prompting a regular reader to leave a comment asking me if it was time to sell on the original Raser article. (Because he's a regular, he knows my policy of preferring to answer questions posed as comments on the blog to email comments: At...

Raser Technologies (RZ): A Bargain, or Just Cheap?

Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA Raser Technologies (NYSE:RZ) stock has fallen almost 50% since the company announce an offering of shares on June 30.  Although the round quickly filled, the stock continued falling, and it seems like a screaming deal.  Is it? On July 7, Raser Technologies sold $25.5M of stock and warrants in a secondary offering.  According to press reports, this amounted to 13% of Raser's stock, thereby valuing the company at (very approximately) $200M, or $175M pre-money.   The units, each consisting of 1 share and 1/2 a warrant exercisable at $4.62 was offered at $2.98. ...

$3 Billion For Cleantech & Alt Energy

Charles Morand The DOE made public earlier today the amount of money that will awarded to clean power projects in lieu of the usual tax breaks: $3 billion. This will allow project proponents to receive a direct cash grant now instead of a Production Tax Credit or an Investment Tax Credit later on. The guidance document notes the following: "Section 1603 of the Act’s tax title, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Tax Act, appropriates funds for payments to persons who place in service specified energy property during 2009 or 2010 or after 2010 if construction began...

Money Is Flowing Into Alt Energy Again, But We Are Not Out Of The...

Charles MorandIt seems as though the darkest clouds are finally dissipating over alt energy's financing horizon. Over the past few weeks, money has started flowing into the sector again, as evidenced by a number of recent deal announcements: On June 9, I reported on the upcoming IPO for Magma Energy Corp., a geothermal exploration company. The IPO's size will be upped from an initial C$50 MM to C$100 MM, a sign of increased market appetite  SunPower Corp. raised $418 MM in early May through a share and debt offering, and recently announced it had reached a $100...

Clean Energy Stocks Shopping List: Landfill Gas and Geothermal

Stocks seem expensive now, but that may not last.  Here are two Landfill Gas stocks and three Geothermal stocks I'm hoping to buy if the market falters. Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA This article continues my Clean Energy Stocks Shopping List series.  So far I've brought you: Five clean transport stocks, I looked at why it makes sense to wait for better prices, Five Energy Efficiency stocks (always my favorite sector), and Five Electric Transmission Stocks. This article takes a look at two of the most economical clean electricity generation technologies, landfill gas and geothermal. Kilowatts from...

Will The Recovery Act Trigger Alt Energy IPOs?

Charles MorandIt goes without saying that the alt energy IPO market has been rather quiet over the past few months. Could this be about to change? Will the slew of alt energy and cleatech incentive programs announced under the Recovery Act, coupled with a return of investors' risk appetite, be enough to convince firms to start going public again? On Monday, I had a chat with Robert Peterman, who handles cleantech for the TMX Group, the owner of the Toronto Stock Exchange and of the TSX Venture Exchange. In the past few years, Toronto has attracted a number...

Geothermal & The ARRA: Some Steamy Details

Charles Morand In October 2007, Tom wrote an excellent overview of the geothermal power sector. By way of recap, geothermal power produces electricity by using steam from naturally-occurring Earth heat that travels up from the planet`s mantle and core by conduction. Conventional geothermal harnesses hot water and fluids already present in the rock while enhanced geothermal systems (ESG) - or next-gen geothermal - works by injecting cold water into hot dry rock (HDR) and pumping out resultant hot water and steam. In terms of business risks, geothermal stands at the confluence of mining and utility/independent power...

U.S. Geothermal, Inc (AMEX: HTM)

US Geothermal, Inc. (AMEX:HTM) ) is one of only two pure-play geothermal power companies traded on US exchanges.  The other is Ormat (NYSE:ORA), a vertically integrated company widely considered to be the industry leader.  As baseload, extremely reliable power, Geothermal fits easily into utilities existing grids, making it a popular source of green power, especially with utilities uncomfortable with the intermittent and difficult to predict nature of wind and solar.   Unlike wind and solar, the potential resource for geothermal power is quite small relative to electricity demand. At least until Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) technology is commercialized,...

Ten Solid Clean Energy Companies to Buy on the Cheap: #10 United Technologies

Like most conglomerates, United Technologies Corporation (UTC), (NYSE:UTX) won't be found in any of the Clean Energy indices, but its growing portfolio of clean energy businesses makes it fit well into a diversified portfolio with a clean energy tilt.  A conservative capital structure and solid earnings and cash flow, and a decades long history of constantly increasing dividends make this a company that I'm comfortable holding for the long term.   In terms of sustainability, the company has been recognized by Dow Jones as in the top 10% of the world's most sustainable companies.  Long before it became fashionable for...

Ten Alternative Energy Speculations for 2008: Geothermal, Wind and Wave, and Thin Film Hype

This article is a continuation of my Ten Alternative Energy Speculations for 2008, with picks #8, 9, and10 published last Thursday.  If you haven't already, please read the introduction to that article before buying any of the stock picks that follow.  These companies are likely to be highly volatile, and large positions are not appropriate for many investors.   My least risky picks are part of that same article linked to above; the moderately risky picks are here.  This article contains the most speculative three picks. #3 Nevada Geothermal Power (OTCBB:NGLPF or Toronto:NGP.V) US$1.29 or CAD$1.26 Geothermal first started catching...

Geothermal: The Other Base Load Power

Last Thursday and Friday I attended the Geopowering the West Investors' Forum in Montrose, CO (hosted by the Delta-Montrose Electric Association, Colorado's most progressive Rural Electric Cooperative.)  I've long been interested in geothermal stocks, and I first started adding them to managed portfolios in 2003.  As a whole, those stocks have more than doubled in the 1-4 years since they were purchased. Fundamental Advantages of Geothermal Electricity Why did I make those first purchases?  Geothermal power has some unique advantages over other forms of renewable energy. Geothermal is base load power.  Utilities have a strong preference towards...

Nevada Geothermal Power Inc. Commences Blue Mountain Development Drilling

Nevada Geothermal Power Inc. (NGLPF) announced that it has initiated development drilling at Blue Mountain Nevada. Production test data from the wells will be used to complete a feasibility study for an initial 30 MW geothermal power plant. In the initial program, four 13-inch diameter production wells will be drilled to 4000 feet (1200 metres) into the moderate temperature (300-330 degrees C) geothermal resource intersected in previous test holes. Permits have been obtained and drill pads are under construction. A water well rig will be used to drill the top 800 feet of each well and to...