GE Growing Their Green Side

A few weeks ago I wrote a post about investing into the wind, solar, biofuel and efficiency industries, noting that nearly all manufacturing investment opportunities channel your money abroad. That could change. A little.

One of the few exceptions, as noted by the comments, is General Electric — a huge company with a small amount of its resources going toward renewable energy manufacturing. In other words, an investment into domestic GE could hardly be called a renewable energy investment. A few days later, however, GE announced a 50 percent increase in their renewable investments.

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GE has been motivated by several factors. Compared with rising energy costs and a volatile fuel market, renewable sources like wind and solar power are stable. GE found itself closing in on its investment goal unimaginably quicker than it had anticipated, and so they’ve decided to pour in more money.

Most of GE’s investments go into wind, which makes up two-thirds of its renewable investment profile. Not only that, but the projects they’re investing in are domestic — which means cleaner domestic energy and more ‘green-collar’ construction jobs:

GE Energy also said yesterday it’s investing in wind farm projects owned by Horizon Wind Energy LLC, a Houston-based developer that is a subsidiary of Energias de Portugal SA. The wind farms are in Illinois, Minnesota, Oregon and Texas.

The four wind farms will annually produce enough electricity to power more than 180,200 average homes in the United States and will avoid nearly 1.4 million tonnes a year in greenhouse gas emissions, compared with equivalent fossil fuel generation, GE Energy said.

With the Horizon deal, GE Energy has invested or committed to invest equity in 85 wind farms and increased its global wind equity holdings to more than 3,600 megawatts of generating capacity.

Always happy to read developments like this. Always unhappy to not read more and to know this just isn’t the scale of investment and change we need.

— Kari M.