Green Energy Reporter’s ranking of the top ten players in green energy for the month of January is out! Taking the lead for the January ranking are British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Miliband (#2 last month). These two are implementing bold green strategies whose impact will be felt well after they leave office, and based on recent polls, showing Conservative leader David Cameron well ahead of Brown, that could happen soon.
Our latest ranking also includes promising companies prepping for possible IPOs as well as on investors putting their money, where so far only a few have…. One such investor is Microsoft founder and Chairman Bill Gates, who last month announced he was spending $4.5 million on various geoengineering projects. This is a risky proposition but not a surprising one coming from someone who dropped out of Harvard to launch the startup that’s become Microsoft!
As we like to remind you, every time we publish out ranking, our top- ten list is based on the players’ influence over green energy policy and their ability to move the debate. Other factors that we take into account in making our monthly selection include industry and popular support for their positions, access to capital to fund innovation and the success of their ventures.
1: British Prime Minister Gordon Brown/Secretary of State for energy and Climate Change Ed Miliband
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Ed Miliband, UK secretary of state for energy and climate change
From small-scale to ginormous-scale, British politicians rolled out complex plans in the last month to put the country on track to meet 15 percent of its energy needs from renewable sources by 2020. First, they announced a ?75 billion ($120 billion) offshore wind project – the so-called Round Three program administered by the independent Crown Estate – that will put thousands of turbines on the country’s seabed. Nine separate consortia won contracts to build the projects. The projects could support 70,000 jobs by 2020, according to Brown.
Then, just this week, Ed Miliband announced new feed-in tariffs for small-scale and home producers of renewable energy. Homeowners could be paid hundreds of pounds from electricity they generate, even if they use it themselves, Miliband said.
Of course, there are enormous challenges, from lack of manufacturing plants that could actually build these offshore turbines to limited offshore connections to the national electricity grid. There’s also the simple matter of getting citizens to buy into green energy. But these projects show ambition that is distinctly lacking elsewhere in the world.
Continue reading January Top Ten Players in Green Energy: Nos 1-5