by Josh Gould
| March 18th 2011
As the many attendees of our recent Cleantech Forum know, the buzz around cleantech for quite some time has been about the convergence of cleantech and data. All kinds of people – myself included – have described (using adjectives) all the ways in which this will be the next major cleantech wave. But I wanted to use this post to drop some of the adjectives, and focus on the verbs (the doing).
At our forum, I hosted three panel discussions – each of which touched on specific actions in integrating data into cleantech:
1. Intelligent Buildings
“Version 1.0″ of the intelligent building was about swapping out old, inefficient light fixtures and HVAC systems for newer, more efficient ones. Certainly 1.0 still has a long ways to go but lighting controls and software companies like Lumenergi, efficiency consulting and implementation firms like Ecos, and traditional HVAC companies like Trane are all increasingly shifting their focus to managing and optimizing data around energy building use, rather than just providing more efficient devices.
2. Financing Energy Efficiency
Traditional energy efficiency financing is based on the ESCO model. While certainly a profitable business for companies like Johnson Controls, this model has …
by Josh Gould
| November 30th 2010
Perhaps it’s because we’re located in Cleantech Group’s San Francisco office, but time and time again we hear comparisons between cleantech and IT. Sometimes the comparisons make cleantech look good. When drawing analogies between cleantech and IT we often hear about the size of the market opportunity, the many smart people dedicating their time and careers to the industry, and the investment dollars from nearby Sand Hill Road (and all across the world, for that matter) which are pouring into cleantech.
Yet we also hear people point out the many ways in which cleantech is different than IT. These comparisons typically cast the industry in a more negative light. We hear about how cleantech startups are less capital efficient than their IT counterparts, how sales cycles can be long and challenging, how the industry is regulated and reliant on policy decisions which may or may not be forthcoming. Clearly there is some truth to these criticisms – though many of them tell parts, but not the whole, of the story.
Whatever one thinks of this never ending debate, there is one area where we can confidently draw a cleantech/ IT comparison: energy efficiency. Let me count the ways. First, in our most …