Author: Gina Mateo

Gina Mateo is a marketing manager at 3Degrees. She has worked in media and marketing for over 10 years, with a specific focus in renewable energy commercial marketing since 2014.

3Degrees’ Erin Craig, Named in Fast Company’s List of the 100 Most Creative People in Business

Erin Craig Fast Company Most Creative People

Fast Company today announced its 10th annual list of the Most Creative People in Business, honoring an influential and diverse group of 100 leaders from a vast range of global industries including tech, design, entertainment, health care, media, government, nonprofit, finance, food, and more.

The Most Creative People in Business list recognizes individuals whose work might not necessarily be quantifiable by numbers, but who are nonetheless having a measurable impact on the world. These scientists, executives, programmers, comedians, founders, designers, musicians, writers, and activists have accomplished something new this year within their field that’s driving their industries forward and solving global and societal problems in novel ways.

This year’s group represents Fast Company’s hallmark of diversity: 52 are women, 48 are men, with more than 25 hailing from outside the United States, and nearly one-third are people of color.

Erin Craig Fast Company“For more than 30 years, I have been working with organizations across the globe to improve their environmental performance,” said Erin Craig, VP, Energy and Climate Practice at 3Degrees. “As climate change presents an increasingly urgent challenge, we need lots of creative thinking, charting a way forward even when an easy path doesn’t present itself. In the face of this imperative, I am deeply motivated to find solutions that work. I am honored to be recognized by Fast Company for doing work that I am passionate about and which is making – I believe and I hope – a significant positive impact in the world.”

Erin works with some of the world’s leading corporations to develop and implement climate and renewable energy strategies. She has personally led dozens of renewable energy supply engagements and assisted clients with contracting for over 1 GW of renewable energy. In 2018, Erin supported Apple, Akamai Technologies (Akamai), Etsy, and Swiss Re as they leveraged their collective buying power in the largest aggregated corporate renewable energy transaction to date. 

Fast Company editors and writers spend a year researching candidates for the list, scouting every sector of business: technology, fashion, cybersecurity, biotech, entertainment, beauty, social good, food, data, consumer goods, and more. The people selected have all accomplished something truly innovative within the past 12 months or so that is having a meaningful effect within their industries. They’re also discoveries — none has ever been profiled in Fast Company before. Taken together, they represent where business is heading right now.

“This year’s edition acknowledges society’s increasingly fraught relationship with technology. It is light on people inventing new apps to sell us more stuff—and mine our personal information—and heavier on leaders trying to protect consumers and companies from unscrupulous actors online,” says Stephanie Mehta, editor-in-chief of Fast Company.

To see the complete list go to: fastcompany.com/most-creative-people/2019

Introduced in 2009, the Most Creative People list was quickly established as one of Fast Company’s most esteemed franchises. Each year, the magazine’s editors present an all-new list of 100 people chosen according to a proprietary methodology.

Fast Company‘s Most Creative People in Business issue (Summer 2019) is available online now at fastcompany.com/most-creative-people/2019 and on newsstands beginning June 4. Join the Most Creative People conversation using #FCMostCreative.

###


About Fast Company

Fast Company is the only media brand fully dedicated to the vital intersection of business, innovation, and design, engaging the most influential leaders, companies and thinkers on the future of business. Since 2011, Fast Company has received some of the most prestigious editorial and design accolades, including the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME) National Magazine Award for “Magazine of the Year,” Adweek’s Hot List for “Hottest Business Publication,” and six gold medals and 10 silver medals from the Society of Publication Designers. The editor-in-chief is Stephanie Mehta and the publisher is Amanda Smith. Headquartered in New York City, Fast Company is published by Mansueto Ventures LLC, along with our sister publication, Inc., and can be found online at fastcompany.com.

Persimmon Creek: Oklahoma Wind Farm

Persimmon Creek: Oklahoma Wind Farm

Persimmon Wind Farm

Persimmon Creek Wind Farm, a 200 MW facility in Oklahoma, is Scout Clean Energy’s first completed wind development. The construction of 73 GE 2.5-MW turbines was completed in under nine months, and the facility has been online since September 2018.

The development of the Persimmon Creek wind farm has had a positive impact on the region. The project has helped to create jobs and will continue to provide economic benefit to Dewey, Ellis and Woodward Counties throughout the life of the project.*

Persimmon is a unique project, as the three-year commitment to purchase RECs from the project was finalized before it reached commercial operation. The competitive REC pricing offered by 3Degrees exceeded Scout’s pro-forma REC income for the project, helping to smooth its financial close.

 

3Degrees + RECS

 

www.green-e.org

3Degrees’ Multiple Mix Product is Green-e Energy certified and meets the environmental and consumer protection standards set forth by the nonprofit Center for Resource Solutions. Learn more at: www.green-e.org.

 

*https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/quinbrook-commences-operations-at-270-million-usd-persimmon-creek-wind-farm-300710303.html

 

Juhl Energy Partners With GE to Build First of Its Kind Solar-Wind Hybrid Project

wind-turbine
  • Bank of America Commits to Long-Term REC Purchases from the Project
  • GE’s Wind Integrated Solar Energy (WiSE) Technology Platform used to Maximize Energy Production
  • Venture Illustrates Potential of Hybrid Solutions to Accelerate Penetration of Renewable Energy

Juhl Energy announced today that it has selected GE Renewable Energy (GE:NYSE) to supply equipment for the first commercial integrated solar-wind hybrid power generation project in the U.S.  The Minnesota-based clean energy company has developed the 2.0MW community-based renewable energy project to provide low-cost, locally generated energy to the Lake Region Electric Cooperative of Pelican Rapids, Minn.  Bank of America (BAC:NYSE) has provided necessary financial support for the project, agreeing to purchase the project-generated Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs), in line with its environmental goals.  3Degrees facilitated the connection between Juhl Energy and Bank of America.

“Distributed generation will play a major role in the implementation of renewable energy in the U.S. electrical market in the years to come,” said Dan Juhl of Juhl Energy. “Projects such as this one, with Juhl Energy’s package design and GE hybrid technology, will economically blend clean, renewable energy into the electric grid at a lower cost, plus add reliability to the system.”

“This unique renewable energy project will provide a tremendous amount of value to the local community. The cost savings from purchasing the hybrid project’s energy will help provide rate stability, benefiting all of our co-op members,” stated Tim Thompson, CEO of Lake Region Electric Cooperative.

The project will use one 2.0-116 wind turbine from GE Renewable Energy’s Onshore Wind business supported by 0.5 MW of PV solar.  The innovative project utilizes GE’s Wind Integrated Solar Energy (WiSE) technology platform – developed through GE’s Global Research Center – to directly integrate the solar panels through the wind turbine’s converter so both wind and solar share the same balance of plant, increasing system net capacity by 3-4 percent and annual energy production by up to 10 percent. The hybrid design gives these type of projects the ability to produce power when it is most needed, with the solar essentially providing summer peak energy, and the wind providing winter peak energy.

Pete McCabe, president and CEO, Onshore Wind, GE Renewable Energy, said, “By leveraging the complementary nature of wind and solar, this unique project shows how GE is driving technology innovation that will help customers deliver more renewable energy in an even more efficient manner.”

Bank of America’s purchase of the RECs from the project long term will cover the bank’s electricity usage in the state and will contribute to its 2020 environmental operations goal of purchasing 100% renewable electricity.

“Accelerating the path to a sustainable future starts with creative thinking and projects that can help drive more low-carbon energy solutions in our communities,” says Alex Liftman, Global Environmental executive at Bank of America. “Through supporting innovative renewable energy projects like this one, we continue to enhance our commitment to reduce our operational impacts on the environment.”

The project will be owned by a subsidiary of Juhl Energy that pools together capital from the company and outside private investors. Juhl is further partnering with Faith Technologies, Inc., to construct the project and collaborate on building additional hybrid projects.   Faith Technologies, Inc. is a national leader in electrical planning, engineering, design and installation that is headquartered in Menasha, Wisconsin and has regional offices throughout the country.  This project will be operational before year end 2018.

###


About Juhl Energy

Juhl Energy is an established leader and pioneer in the renewable energy industry with a focus on competitive, clean energy solutions, including wind, solar, hybrid systems and heat/power projects designed for rural communities, municipal electric companies, and industrial companies throughout the United States.  Juhl Energy has completed 25 projects, accounting for over 350 MW’s of power.  Juhl services every aspect of development from general consultation, engineering, construction and management, to system operations and maintenance.   Juhl Energy is headquartered in Chanhassen, MN, and has other offices in Chicago, and Milwaukee. 

About GE Renewable Energy

GE Renewable Energy is a $10 billion business with an innovative spirit and entrepreneurial mindset, bringing together one of the broadest energy products and digital services portfolios in the renewable energy industry. Combining onshore and offshore wind, blades, hydro and innovative technologies such as hybrid systems and concentrated solar power, GE Renewable Energy has installed more than 400+ gigawatts capacity globally to make the world work better and cleaner. With more than 22,000 employees present in more than 80 countries, GE Renewable Energy is working on new ways to power the world’s biggest economies and more remote communities. 

About Bank of America

At Bank of America, we’re guided by a common purpose to help make financial lives better, through the power of every connection. We’re delivering on this through responsible growth with a focus on our environmental, social and governance (ESG) leadership. ESG is embedded across our eight lines of business and reflects how we help fuel the global economy, build trust and credibility, and represent a company that people want to work for, invest in and do business with. It’s demonstrated in the inclusive and supportive workplace we create for our employees, the responsible products and services we offer our clients, and the impact we make around the world in helping local economies thrive. An important part of this work is forming strong partnerships with nonprofits and advocacy groups, such as community, consumer and environmental organizations, to bring together our collective networks and expertise to achieve greater impact.  

Apple, Akamai, Etsy and Swiss Re Collaborate to Accelerate Renewable Energy Development in Illinois and Virginia

PJM Press Release

Projects to generate 290 megawatts of clean energy, enough to power 74,000 homes

Apple, Akamai, Etsy and Swiss Re today announced an agreement to develop two new wind and solar energy farms in Illinois and Virginia. Spearheaded by Apple, the new projects will generate 290 megawatts to the PJM electric grid serving much of the Eastern United States, including areas of Virginia, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland. The two new projects will provide enough power for 74,000 homes and will support each of the companies’ operations.

Akamai, Etsy and Swiss Re previously had limited opportunity to access large renewable energy projects in the regions covered by the thirteen state PJM wholesale electric market. By collaborating with Apple, these companies were able to access wind and solar power from the new projects at competitive prices and agreement terms. Collaborations like this accelerate the pace at which new renewable energy generation is built and brought online.

The group, with technical assistance from 3Degrees, will collectively purchase 125 megawatts from a wind farm near Chicago and 165 megawatts from a solar PV project outside Fredericksburg, Virginia, which will be delivered to the electric grid covered by the PJM wholesale electric market. The projects are expected to come online over the next two years. The solar and wind projects will be developed by sPower (an AES and AIMCo company) and Geronimo Energy, respectively.

“At Apple, we’re proud to power all of our operations around the world with 100 percent renewable energy,” said Lisa Jackson, Apple’s Vice President of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives. “In the process, we’ve charted a course for other companies and organizations to purchase renewable energy and transition their own operations to greener power. The collaboration announced today shows how companies of all sizes can address climate change by coming together.”

“Etsy is excited to be a part of a project that will benefit both the planet and our customers,” said Rachel Glaser, Etsy Chief Financial Officer. “This agreement will help Etsy to meet our goal of powering operations with 100% renewable electricity while also innovating by paving the way for small companies to participate in the renewable energy market.”

“We are proud to be partnering with these corporate leaders to accelerate renewable energy adoption. For Akamai, this collaboration was critical in closing these deals; and, in conjunction with our Texas wind project signed last year, we are on target to achieve our 2020 global renewable energy goal,” said Jim Benson, Akamai EVP and CFO.

“As a leader in mitigating climate risk, Swiss Re aims to reduce its carbon footprint and support renewable energy, which is why we’re so happy to be part of this collaboration,” said Brian Beebe, Head of Origination North America, Weather and Energy, Swiss Re Corporate Solutions. “We also hope to speed up the adoption of these clean technologies through Swiss Re Corporate Solutions’ innovative insurance products, which help owners of wind and solar assets decrease cash flow uncertainty.”

“We commend Apple’s leadership in this collaboration between them, Akamai and Etsy. Without this group of forward-thinking companies this project would not be a reality,” said Ryan Creamer, CEO of sPower.


About Akamai
As the world’s largest and most trusted cloud delivery platform, Akamai makes it easier for its customers to provide the best and most secure digital experiences on any device, anytime, anywhere. Akamai’s massively distributed platform is unparalleled in scale with over 200,000 servers across 130 countries, giving customers superior performance and threat protection. Akamai’s portfolio of web and mobile performance, cloud security, enterprise access, and video delivery solutions are supported by exceptional customer service and 24/7 monitoring. To learn why the top financial institutions, e-commerce leaders, media & entertainment providers, and government organizations trust Akamai please visitwww.akamai.com,blogs.akamai.com, or @Akamai onTwitter. For more information about Akamai’s renewable energy program please visit our sustainability site.

About Etsy
Etsy is the global marketplace for unique and creative goods. Our mission is to keep commerce human, and we’re committed to using the power of business to strengthen communities and empower people. We connect millions of buyers and sellers from nearly every country in the world. Buyers come to Etsy to be inspired and delighted by items that are crafted and curated by creative entrepreneurs. For sellers, we offer a range of tools and services that address key business needs.
Etsy was founded in 2005 and is headquartered in Brooklyn, New York.

About Swiss Re
The Swiss Re Group is one of the world’s leading providers of reinsurance, insurance and other forms of insurance-based risk transfer, working to make the world more resilient. It anticipates and manages risk – from natural catastrophes to climate change, from ageing populations to cyber crime. The aim of the Swiss Re Group is to enable society to thrive and progress, creating new opportunities and solutions for its clients. Headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, where it was founded in 1863, the Swiss Re Group operates through a network of around 80 offices globally. It is organised into three Business Units, each with a distinct strategy and set of objectives contributing to the Group’s overall mission.

About sPower
sPower, an AES and AIMCo company, is the largest private owner of operating solar assets in the United States. sPower owns and operates a portfolio of solar and wind assets greater than 1.3 GW and has a development pipeline of more than 10 GW. sPower is owned by a joint venture partnership between The AES Corporation (NYSE: AES), a worldwide energy company headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, and the Alberta Investment Management Corporation, one of Canada’s largest and most diversified institutional investment fund managers. For more information, visit www.sPower.com.

Reaction from Climate Leadership Conference 2018

Climate-leadership-conference-2018

Last week, Denver, Colorado played host to the 2018 Climate Leadership Conference (CLC). The objective of the CLC is to bring together prominent energy, climate, and sustainability leaders across business, government and academia in order to make collective progress towards building a low-carbon future.

The unofficial theme of the conference was ‘we are still in,’ which echoes the sentiment of many states, cities, and businesses in the aftermath of the United States’ decision to pull out of the Paris Agreement. This year’s event had an agreeably different tone than year’s past. For one, this is the first year the EPA elected to not sponsor the event. Bloomberg Philanthropies stepped in to organize the event and foot the bill. The result of this change only fueled the attitude of empowering private entities to take action to tackle climate change.

The conference also set the stage for the Global Climate Action Summit later this year in San Francisco. Matt Rodriquez, secretary for California’s Environmental Protection Agency, facilitated a strategy exchange to a standing room only audience on the Summit’s objective of spurring additional action at the sub-national level, creating healthy energy systems, and ensuring equity for all.

3Degrees proudly served as a CLC sponsor and sent along two representatives to absorb content and speak directly with conference attendees. During the three days of the conference, there were a few topics that kept cropping up. Here is what we heard:

The big news:

Several big corporations made waves with their new climate commitments. L’Oreal USA announced their commitment to carbon neutrality by next year. “Sustainability isn’t just what we do, it’s who we want to be.” said Danielle Zaoulay, head of CSR and sustainability and Jay Harf vice president of environment, health, safety and sustainability, who presented on behalf of L’Oreal.

Doug Sabo, Visa’s head of global corporate responsibility also made the official announcement that Visa has joined RE100 and has committed to 100 percent renewables across its global operation by the end of 2019.

“We congratulate Visa on joining RE100 with an ambitious 100 percent renewable electricity goal, and for demonstrating leadership by working with key stakeholders to build local renewable electricity markets,” said Sam Kimmins, RE100, at The Climate Group.

The big winners:

Some of the conference’s notable winners were Citigroup, that won the Organizational Leadership Award for its commitment to a $100 billion investment over 10 years to go towards facilitating low carbon initiatives. Goldman Sachs won the Innovative Partnership Certificate for its investment in a partnership to implement new energy efficient technologies for buildings. And a client of 3Degrees, Biogen, won an Excellence in Greenhouse Gas Management/Goal Setting Certificate for their ambitious goal of 35% reduction in absolute greenhouse gas by 2030. Biogen has also signed on to RE100 with a commitment to source 100% of its global electricity from renewables.

Focus on scope 1 & 3:

Purchasing carbon offsets is no longer the primary focus of industry attention and investment. This was proven by the many topics and conversations that came out of Climate Leadership Conference. Focus, instead, is being paid to answering the question, how will we eliminate Scope 1 emissions; discussing initiatives such as electrifying thermal load.

Transportation was also a significant focus of the conference. Transportation continues to be a huge source of global carbon emissions, however, relatively little has been done to address it. With the birth of Amazon Delivery Service and the rampant growth of residential delivery needs, emissions from small-scale commercial vehicles has swollen to now comprise ⅔ of total transportation carbon emissions. And the size of commercial fleets are only getting larger, which emphasizes the need for immediate action to address this critical issue.

Momentum is building:

Climate Leadership Conference served as a massive pep rally for climate leaders. More so than ever, climate leaders across business and government are banding together to make genuine progress. Like-minded organizations are partnering together for VPPA transactions, combining resources to address the carbon footprint of joint suppliers, and sharing best practices for corporate sustainability initiatives.

Gina McCarthy served as the conference keynote speaker. As former head of the EPA, McCarthy offered unique perspective into the shift towards the privatization and sub-national activation of climate leadership. “If Washington won’t lead on climate change, the American people will” said McCarthy during her stirring speech.

Many thanks to The Climate Registry, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, and Bloomberg Philanthropies for organizing another successful conference. We are proud to be part of it and look forward to many years of continued partnership.

OneEnergy, 3Degrees, and Net Impact Announce 2018 Energy Scholars

2018 Energy Scholars award winner-group shot

Top academic minds join high caliber community of renewable energy leaders

2018 Energy Scholars award winner-group shot

From left to right: Bhuvan Neema, Michelle Davis, Krisztina Pjeczka, Josh Constanti, Kayla Kutter, Jaydeep Laljani, Taylor Price, and Nitish Garg

In partnership with Net Impact, OneEnergy Renewables and 3Degrees are thrilled to announce the 2018 class of Energy Scholars.

The Energy Scholar program, now in its seventh year, is designed to cultivate and empower tomorrow’s renewable energy leaders through professional mentoring, networking, and industry access. The goal of the program is to foster a new generation of skilled and experienced professionals to take on the fight against climate change.

“We congratulate the 2018 Energy Scholar awardees and look forward to supporting their contributions toward an equitable new energy economy,” said Jennifer Barnes, vice president of operations & communications at OneEnergy Renewables. “We are also thrilled to have partnered with our long-standing friends at 3Degrees this year.  OneEnergy believes that with both companies working together, the Energy Scholars will enjoy even more career opportunities and experiences.”

The Energy Scholar Program recipients comprise students from esteemed institutions such as Duke, UCLA, University of Michigan, and Yale across the spectrum of renewable energy industry needs, including sustainable energy policy, power system modeling, and renewable thermal technologies.

“We are enjoying getting to know this diverse and talented class of Energy Scholars.” said Adam Capage, vice president of corporate and government affairs at 3Degrees. “Their impressive academic achievements, coupled with steadfast commitment to growing the renewable energy industry makes us optimistic about the future.”

Net Impact, OneEnergy Renewables and 3Degrees would like to congratulate the exemplary dedication these students continue to demonstrate and look forward to seeing the impact they will make on the renewable energy sector.

“Net Impact is so proud of our continued partnership with One Energy Renewables during the last several years!” said Liz Maw, Net Impact’s CEO. “This year, we deepened our shared commitment further, cultivating emerging-generation renewable energy leaders through the Energy Scholars program. By expanding our partnership to include 3Degrees, another pioneering organization focused on transitioning towards a low-carbon economy, as well as including the topic of racial diversity at the Energy Scholars conference session, collectively, we’re accelerating our future energy industry leaders in key, relevant ways. We look forward to many more years of working together for a more sustainable world.”  

To learn more about the Energy Scholars program, click here  and here.

Top challenges for businesses setting goals around climate change

cdp-luncheon-nyc

Last month, 3Degrees hosted an interactive luncheon for top sustainability leaders at Fortune 500 companies. The session, which included presentations from Lance Pierce, president of CDP North America and Kim Fiske, 3Degrees vice president of strategy and corporate development, revolved around challenges and successes of setting and achieving renewable energy (RE) and greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets. Executives from over a dozen top tier companies gathered to learn about a range of environmental targets and the merits of each.

Discussion focused on a few key areas:

subject-oneWhy should companies set a renewable energy or greenhouse goal?


As in so many other parts of business, here the old adage holds true: what gets measured gets managed. This is why setting public renewable energy and GHG goals is imperative for organizations looking to drive innovation and maximize cost efficiency. CDP data indicates that companies with public goals make more progress at a faster rate than those that do not. Other reasons for goal setting includes improved competitive positioning and compliance.

reason-twoBarriers to setting and achieving goals.


Organizations across various sectors said they were facing similar challenges to setting and achieving public goals. Top challenges included:

  • Uncertainty on where to begin and how to build a business case
  • Lack of data and reporting
  • Lack of support from appropriate stakeholders

Other challenges included budgetary issues, fear of failure, and lack of internal alignment. For organizations that have set goals, some cited a lack of an action plan as another significant challenge.

Fortunately there is no need to reinvent the wheel. There are a number of resources and examples to draw upon from groups like CDP and from consulting organizations like 3Degrees. Learn from the experience of others and adjust their approach to your organization’s needs, appetite for change and corporate culture. Best practices include involving a broad group of stakeholders, starting small, and considering all relevant options for reducing your footprint, not just those with the most “buzz”.

reason-3Goal setting options


There are many types of goals that companies can set around reducing their carbon footprint. These include intensity goals, goals around energy efficiency, and goals around absolute reductions. These may (but don’t have to be) associated with public pledges of commitment. At our event, participants were most interested in discussing the relative merits of two particular pledges/goals: RE100 and Science Based Targets (SBTs).

RE100 asks companies that participate to commit to 100% renewable energy. RE100 can be appealing to companies because of the relatively low barrier to participation and relative simplicity in aligning stakeholders. The continuing decline of renewable energy costs also make it an attractive emission reduction option and has led to a recent spike in adoption.

According to the 2017 CDP report, the number of companies with renewable energy targets has increased 23% in the last year.

Another goal setting option that appears to be part of a growing movement among industry leaders is science-based targets (SBTs). The Science Based Targets Initiative has established a common framework that companies can rally behind. It also sends a strong message to the market about the need for meaningful action on climate and can also help uncover the most cost-effective mechanism for individual organizations.

Signing on to SBTs is a significant commitment and can be overwhelming for many organizations. It oftentimes requires a fundamental change to the business which may be too high a hurdle for some. In addition, partly because of its popularity, there is currently a backlog of companies awaiting data and target validation, leading to a longer adoption process.

One size does not fit all


Every industry and every company has unique challenges and opportunities when it comes to reducing their carbon footprint. The trick is to find which set of tools work best for your organization today and in the future.

With a portfolio of options to choose from including onsite solar, renewable energy certificates (RECs) green tariffs and power purchase agreements (PPAs), we recommend companies consider all available tools.

The graph below illustrates what tools are being used across industries to address scope 2 emissions targets.

power-purchase-agreements*EACs (energy attribute certificates) include RECs, GOs, and IRECs.

Bottom line: By taking a portfolio approach to establish environmental targets, organizations are able to diversify risk, manage costs, and have a greater overall impact.  This all starts by determining the most meaningful goals for your company.

For more information on RE & GHG goal setting or to speak to someone directly about your organization’s unique set of challenges, please contact us or request a quote.