Monday, January 13, 2014

Top 10 Energy Technology Headline Grabbers for 2014

Record-breaking solar sector leads the list

SAN FRANCISCO, USA: For the third consecutive year, Antenna Group has announced its top 10 energy technology areas to watch in the coming year.

San Francisco-based Antenna Group, a Beckerman company, is the nation's largest energy technology communications firm, representing companies across sectors including renewable energy, energy efficiency, alternative fuels, energy storage, finance, waste management and water. Antenna Group's top 10 headline grabbers for 2014 are drawn from the company's experience with more than 40 clients in these sectors, as well as conversations with analysts, media and other industry influencers.

"Our diverse roster of market-disrupting clients gives us unique insight into the energy technology trends that will shape our world in the year to come," said Keith Zakheim, Antenna Group's CEO. "Last year, we correctly predicted a number of sustainable technologies and services that entered mainstream in 2013. We look forward to seeing this new round of emerging technologies secure a firm foothold in the energy marketplace."

"Each day, the Antenna team works to elevate emerging energies and clean technologies to underscore economic viability and support widespread acceptance," added Anna Cahill Leonard, Antenna Group's president. "This list of energy technology trends charts the technologies of tomorrow. We look forward to watching these conversations progress throughout 2014."

Four out of Antenna's top 10 trends take place in the solar sector, spurred by solar's record-breaking year of growth. According to a recent report by the Solar Energy Industry Association and GTM Research, Q3 was the largest quarter ever for residential solar installations - and the second largest quarter in the history of the US solar market.

Driven by solar PV module price reductions, the rising cost of grid-tied electricity and the growth of innovative financing models, the nation's solar PV capacity could rise five-fold to 50 gigawatts or more by 2017, according to a recent report from Deutsche Bank.

Other important trends focus on making better use of existing resources, including by transforming wasted flare gas into valuable gasoline; recycling electronic components, rubber and plastic into new products; and implementing new types of financing for sustainable technologies.

Here are Antenna's top 10 energy technology headline grabbers for 2014:

Soaring solar securitization. Solar securitization was off to the races at the end of 2013 with the announcement by SolarCity of a $54.4 million solar asset-backed financing package. The deal, which pooled solar contracts from more than 5,000 installations, represents the first time that securitization, or the practice of pooling disparate sources of debt and selling the package to investors, has been applied to solar. Such deals accelerate solar adoption by increasing access to capital; expect more in 2014.

Solar Big Data, at last. The lack of financial, technical and operational performance data on solar PV systems has held back banks, insurers, credit rating agencies and utilities from investing in solar.


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