Capturing More Value from Renewables: A Better Way for Large End-Users


21 Sep

(Submit Articles) Large end-user interest in participating in the renewable power market continues to grow. Google, for example, recently reached an agreement to buy the output of a large wind farm in Iowa, owned by NextEra. Recent data from EPA’s Green Power Partnership shows that leading organizations — from Fortune 500 companies to local, state and federal governments and a growing number of colleges and universities – are buying green electricity and Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs). The combined annual purchases of the 50 largest buyers in EPA’s Green Power Partnership amounted to over 12.3 billion kilowatt-hours.

However, despite the significant and laudable commitment of these organizations, many of the current purchasing arrangements do not help them realize the full value of renewables. These agreements tend to fall into one of the following categories: (a) Purchase of green electricity from a provider; (b) Displacement of retail purchases through a single on-site project (e.g., a roof-top solar unit); or (c) Purchase of RECs from a provider. However, these arrangements do not effectively position end-users to capture three important sources of value:

* Hedge Value. Direct ownership of solar or wind generation assets (either in full or in part) provides a hedge against escalating electricity prices that are driven by inflation in fossil fuel prices. They also offer a hedge against future carbon prices.

* Other Economic Benefits. Under most common structures, the lion’s share of benefits like cost savings, tax benefits, government incentives accrue to equity investors. In an equity-like position, these benefits would flow directly to end consumers.

* Brand Value. In most cases, REC purchases alone limit the impact organizations can have transforming the green energy landscape.

Recognizing these shortcomings, CustomerFirstRenewables (CFR) was formed in early 2010 to help organizations achieve their energy goals with tailored and profitable renewable power supply solutions. It also provides a compelling return on investment.

CFR starts the process by developing a clear understanding of customer needs. Because CFR’s proposal development process is highly-collaborative, it also builds organizational buy-in and momentum for the agreed solution. CFR leverages its network of value chain partners to deliver the solution and ensure it delivers attractive benefits over the life of the renewable assets.

To know more about renewable power supply solutions offered by CustomerFirstRenewables, log on to http://www.customerfirstrenewables.com

Visit the Author's website: http://www.customerfirstrenewables.com/


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