In India, according to the World Bank, approximately 400 million people are without access to reliable electricity and an estimated 100,000 villages are without access to the national grid and receive no electricity. In these cases, the use of coal, kerosene, and other "dirty" fuel sources for power, cooking, and lighting provide energy with intermittent quality and reliability, as well as serious health and environmental concerns.
The lack of reliable light at night affects young students’ ability to study and these find it difficult to concentrate on their studies for an extended period of time, due to irritation and pain in the eyes caused by smoke and heat produced from kerosene lamps. These unsafe sources of energy also cause long-term lung conditions.
Today I’m thrilled to share, that the Applied Materials Foundation, (and our partners) E+Co and SELCO were invited to the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) to announce our commitment to electrifying villages and schools and training social entrepreneurs in rural India.
Applied Materials’ president of Solar, Dr. Charlie Gay along with Peking University’s president, Zhou Qifeng; China’s National Energy Administration (NEA) chief engineer and director of the international cooperation department, Wu Guihui; U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) China office executive director, Martin Schoenbauer and other representatives of NEA and the university kicked off the Chinese Solar Decathlon competition with a dedication ceremony in Beijing, China this week.
Whenever I hear from the deniers of climate change I am reminded of the above political cartoon from Joel Pett. The cartoon gets to the heart of the matter whether you believe the science behind climate change or not as it highlights the benefits of going to a cleaner mix of energy and creating a better world.
As I mentioned on the National Journal’s Energy Blog, tax incentives are part of the solution but must be used with many more and different policies if we expect to build a competitive renewable energy industry in the U.S. that can compete with heavily subsidized programs in China, Japan and India. The U.S. needs policy incentives that both pull deployment and demand and push domestic manufacturing.
The renewable energy sector, and the solar photovoltaics industry in particular, lost a great leader on Thursday, October 14. Hermann Scheer, winner of the Alternative Nobel Prize, and mentor and champion of the solar photovoltaics industry, died unexpectedly in Berlin at the age of 66.
Last week, the Senate unfortunately failed to act on Senate Bill 3663 – a comprehensive energy reform bill before the August recess. In light of this disappointing delay, it is now more necessary than ever to focus our efforts to develop, and successfully implement, clean energy legislation at the state level.
While some question the value of investments in a green-collar industry, many law makers, as well as individuals and companies, are pushing for stronger development of this sector.
The Silicon Valley Leadership Group and Google co-hosted a morning program this week entitled “Electric Bills and Oil Spills-Will California Continue to Be a Clean Energy Leader?” With more than 400 people in attendance, the question certainly seemed to be a timely and important one.
At the White House this morning, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke made a compelling case for America’s next great industry – the renewable energy industry. Speaking at the Clean Energy Economy Forum, Secretary Locke told an audience of top administration and business leaders that clean energy is key to creating “the greatest economic opportunity of the 21st century.” We couldn’t agree more.
On Friday, President Obama called on Congress to extend the popular clean energy manufacturing tax credit (MTC) [Section 48C] program by approving an additional $5 billion in investment. This would more than double the $2.3 billion that Congress authorized last year as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
An investment of this size would create upwards of 40,000 jobs and generate more than $12 billion in private sector investment, which would lead to an additional 90,000 jobs, according to the president.
Despite the ongoing tragedy in the Gulf, there is still a glimmer of hope to be found amid the devastating oil spill: real attention is finally being paid to the need for a clean energy transition, and at the highest levels of government no less. In a speech delivered at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh last Wednesday, President Obama reiterated his appeal to Congress to pass a climate change bill this year.
In case you missed it, the LA Times reported yesterday China overtook the United States for the first time in the race to invest in clean energy.
In its article, the LA Times features Applied Materials executive Mark Pinto and his insights into the company's investment in China and the country's advantages in government incentives, a clear policy and strong demand from the state-wide utilities controlling energy capcity.
An excerpt from the LA Times:
Nowhere is the competition as strong as in China, with its globally dominant manufacturing base and wide-r