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Profiting from Clean Energy: A Complete Guide to Trading Green in Solar, Wind, Ethanol, Fuel Cell, Carbon Credit Industries, and More


Praise for Profiting From Clean Energy

"We are on the road to ending our reliance on oil and coal, and it's about time. Here is a book that can definitely help you profit, as we slay the dragon!"
—Yale Hirsch, founder and coauthor of the Stock Trader's Almanac

"An impressive, well-written resource for an investment arena destined to become vital to us. Clear, sound advice for anyone investing in new technology or growth industries. Highly recommended."
—Perry Kaufman, author of New Trading Systems and Methods, Fourth Edition

"Few people recognize the breadth of opportunities available in the clean energy sector. This book provides an outstanding and very informative guide for the clean energy sector, whether for pure understanding or for deciding how to invest in the sector."
—Richard P. Kiphart, head of William Blair & Company's Corporate Finance Department, and Chairman of Lime Energy

"The clean energy sector will be the most dynamic opportunity for investors in the next few decades, and accurate insight and information will determine investment success. Richard Asplund has provided a vital and comprehensive road map for those dedicated to leading and profiting from the disruptive shift to a vibrant clean energy economy. Smart investors should not proceed without first studying this valuable book."
—Travis Bradford, author of Solar Revolution and founder of the Prometheus Institute

"Bravo! Profiting from Clean Energy is destined to become the bible for clean energy investors. Richard Asplund has clearly identified the various sub-sectors and drivers and provided a clear road map for investors."
—William Custer, President and CEO of Custer Capital

Richard W. Asplund is a professional investment analyst and advisor with twenty-five years of experience. He received an MBA cum laude from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, a juris doctor degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a bachelor of science degree in industrial engineering cum laude from the University of Minnesota. Asplund founded his own investment research firm in 1983 and is currently a professional equity analyst and advisor specializing in clean energy stocks. He has been interviewed on CNBC, Fox, Bloomberg TV, Japanese NHK TV, and National Public Radio, and has been quoted in print publications such as Dow Jones, Reuters, USA Today, Newsweek, and others.


Chapter 1. Clean Energy Investments and Performance - The Show Has Just Begun.

Clean Energy Business Startup.

Angel Investing.

Venture Capital.

Publicly Traded Stocks.

Clean Energy Stocks Listed Outside the US.

Large-cap Stocks.

Global Petroleum Companies.

Clean Energy Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) and Mutual Funds.

Clean Energy - Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs).

Green Mutual Funds.

Global ETFs and Green Mutual Funds.

Futures and Options.

Investment Criteria for Publicly-Traded Stocks.

Valuation and Bubbles.

Clean Energy Stock Performance.

Chapter 2. Catalysts for the Clean Energy Industry.

Fossil Fuel Negatives – Pollution, CO2 Emissions, Cartels, Price Spikes, and Rising Prices.

Energy Security.

Growing Global Energy Demand.

Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Climate Change.

Clean Energy Technology Improvements.

Demand for Distributed Power Solutions Due to Grid Unreliability.

Rising Electricity Prices.

Could the Clean Energy Movement Fizzle if Oil Prices Plunge?

Clean Energy Catalysts - Investment Conclusion.

Chapter 3. The Government Push - Strong Enough to Get Clean Energy to Fossil Fuel Parity?

Types Of Government Clean Energy Incentives And Mandates.

Renewable Energy Targets Worldwide.

Government Clean Energy Support Initiatives in the United States.

A Post-Kyoto Carbon Emissions Framework.

Chapter 4. Clean Energy Potential - Double-Digit Growth for Decades.

Overview of Global and US Energy Flows.

Overview of US Electricity Generation Sources.

Fossil Fuel Market Size - Even a Nose Under the Tent is Worth Billions.

Renewable Energy Forecasts.

Chapter 5. Solar Power - The Sky is the Limit.

Solar Thermal Power.

Solar Photovoltaic Power.

Solar Power Industry Growth Rates.

Demand Generated by Government Incentives and Regulation.

Solar Power Pricing and Competitiveness.

Solar Power Pricing and Competitiveness.

Upstream Solar Players - Polysilicon & Wafer Producers.

Thin Film Threats to Crystalline Silicon Solar Cells.

Upgraded Metallurgical Silicon (uMGS)—A Threat to Traditional Polysilicon Producers?

Solar PV Cell and Module Producers.

The Outlook for Solar Cell/Module Manufacturers.

Investment Criteria for the Solar PV Industry.

Chapter 6. Wind Power - The Picturesque Dutch Windmill Gets a Technology Makeover.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Wind Power.

How Do Wind Turbines Work?

Technological Developments.

Offshore Wind.

Industry Growth Rates and Prospects for Future Growth.

The Economics of Wind Power.

Government-Sponsored Incentives.

Wind Industry Issue - Component Shortages.

Wind Industry Players.

Chapter 7. Fuel Cells - Present & Accounted for in Some Applications Already.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Fuel Cells.

What is a Fuel Cell? - Overview of the Technology.

Fuel Cell Industry Analysis - Industry Players.

Fuel Cell Industry Target Markets.

Commercialization Challenges.

Chapter 8. Geothermal Power - Dante's Contribution to Clean Energy.

Advantages/Disadvantages of Geothermal Power.

Geothermal Resources.

The Extraction of Geothermal Energy.

Geothermal Power Plant Systems Under Development.

Geothermal Heat Pumps.

Economics of Geothermal Power.

The Future of Geothermal Energy.

Chapter 9. Cleaner Utilities - Teaching an Old Dog New Tricks.

Green Power Marketing Programs.

Renewable Energy Certificates.

Sources of Renewable Energy.

Methane Gas Extraction.

Companies Operating in Biomass and Biogas.

Wave and Tide Power.

Chapter 10. Power Efficiency – "The Cheapest and Most Available Source of Energy Is the Energy We Waste".

Efficient Appliances.

Efficient Lighting.

Efficient Buildings - Green Buildings.

Companies Involved in Building Efficiency.

Chapter 11. Smart Meters - Getting Smart on Grid Efficiency and Reliability.

Smart Grid.

Demand Response as a Power Efficiency Solution.

The Role of Smart Meters.

Demand Response and Advanced Metering.

Benefits of Smart Meters.

Current Smart Meter Usage.

Advanced Metering Costs and Benefits.

Southern California Edison's Business Case Experience for Advanced Metering.

Interoperability And Industry Standards.

Global Demand Response.

US Regulators - Generally Positive Toward Advanced Metering.

What is Ahead for the Smart Meter Industry?

Industry Meter Penetration Rates and Upgrade Opportunities.

Smart Meter Industry Growth Rates.

Electricity Meter Market Shares.

Chapter 12. Power Storage and Backup Systems - When the Grid Just Won't Do.

Types of Direct Electricity Storage Systems.

Types of Power Storage Systems.

Target Market Sizes.

Chapter 13. Clean Transportation - Electric Hybrids Are Charged Up and Ready to Go.

The Internal Combustion Engine - Can It Be Saved?

Alternative Fuels for the Internal Combustion Engine

Eliminating the Internal Combustion Engine

Hybrid Gasoline-Electric Vehicles

Plug-in Electric Hybrid Vehicles (PHEVs).

Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Players.

All-Electric Vehicles.

Clean Transportation Investment Conclusions.

Chapter 14. Ethanol/Biofuels - US Farmers Play David to OPEC's Goliath.

Biofuels - What Are They?

Advantages and Disadvantages

US Government Support for Ethanol.

Obstacles for the US Ethanol Industry.

Brazilian Competition.

How far Can Ethanol Go to Replace Gasoline in the US Transportation Fuel Supply?

The Future of Ethanol—Cellulosic-Based Ethanol.

Ethanol Company Investment Analysis.

US Ethanol Indusry Market Shares.

Ethanol Investment Conclusions.

Companies Supporting the US Ethanol Industry.

Chapter 15. Trading Biofuel Markets - Feedstock Frenzy.




Soybean Oil.

Palm Oil.

Chapter 16. Big Coal - Meet Your New Partners: Cleaner Coal and Carbon Capture.

Global Coal Usage.

US Coal Companies.

Cleaner Coal Technologies.

Cleaner Burning Coal.

Coal-Fired Power Plant Pollution Controls.

Coal Gasification and CO2 Sequestration.

Algae-based CO2 Absorption.

Coal-to-Liquid Transportation Fuel.

Chapter 17. Carbon Trading - Poised to Become the World's Largest Commodity Market?

Trading European CO2 Allowances.

Causes of Price Movements.

European Cap-and-Trade CO2 Emissions Background Explanation.

Chicago Climate Exchange.

Chapter 18. Investment Conclusions.

Investment Conclusions for Clean Energy.

Investment Risks.