Energy Storage Financing Takes Off…Energy Efficiency Geekdom…Latest Creation by Circular Economy Guru

Jan. 20, 2016
News about energy storage financing from Green Charge Networks…BYOT from Navigant…a new circular economy creation by William McDonough…Miami Dolphins LEDs from Eaton.

Solar growth took off in a big way when the industry began offering no money down financing. Now the same appears to be happening in energy storage financing.

Green Charge Networks offers its customers what it describes as the industry’s first no-cost, performance-based financing model, the Power Efficiency Agreement. The company expects the model to save $36 million for its school district customers alone.

The approach appears to be getting the thumbs up from investors, with Green Charge Networks recently closing $20 million in non-recourse project finance debt plus a $30 million accordion from Ares Capital. It will help Green Charge Network serve its rapidly growing energy storage financing portfolio, which includes equipment, construction, operations and maintenance of behind-the-meter projects.

Green Charge has more than 31.3 MWh of energy storage projects in operation or under construction ranging from school districts, retail, governments and utilities.


Think of it as the way energy efficiency geeks like to party.

Bring your own thermostat (BYOT) demand response programs, around since 2012, now encompass 50,000 utility customers and a $12.5 million market. But BYOT has the potential to grow to 20 million customers, a $3 billion market. That’s the word from Navigant’s new report,  Bring Your Own Thermostat Demand Response.

Now still in pilot mode, BYOT programs will increasingly replace programs where utilities select thermostats for demand response programs.  Bring your own thermostat means just that. Customers choose their own thermostat from among various vendors and use them in the utility demand response or load curtailment programs. Utilities see BYOT as a way to reduce acquisition costs for load curtailment programs and improve customer satisfaction.


Circular economy guru William McDonough unveiled his ‘Innovation for the Circular Economy House’ (ICEhouse) in Davos this week as part of the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting.

Forum participants will gather in the structure to discuss the future of innovation for the circular economy. The building is designed for disassembly and reconstruction — it will be moved after the event to Amsterdam’s The Valley at Schiphol Trade Park, which is The Netherlands’ new National Hub for the Circular Economy (for which McDonough is a partner and master architect.)

“In a poetic sense, like ice, it is ephemeral: It is here for a week, in the Alps. Next week it will melt away… destined to reappear elsewhere,” McDonough said.

The structure has been designed to demonstrate the framework McDonough described in his book “Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things.” It also fits with the sustainable development goals of the United Nations and the reuse of resources implicit in the circular economy.

ICEhouse is an experiment in employing the WonderFrame, which McDonough is designing as part of a broader vision for a simple structural system that could be created quickly with locally available materials (in any given location) and accommodate a range of uses.


Sun Life Stadium, home of the Miami Dolphins, is upgrading its stadium lighting with Eaton’s Ephesus LED lighting. The new LED system has instant-on capability that eliminates the warm-up period associated with more traditional bulb-based lighting such as metal halide products, according to Eaton.

The Ephesus LED lighting system is brighter than the previous system. Through its industry-leading glare-control innovations, its fixtures shine more uniformly on the playing surface, creating a better stage for players and fans both in the stadium and those watching on high-definition television, says the company’s news release.

The new LED system, expected to reduce energy use by up 75 percent, will be ready for the beginning of the 2016 NFL football season.

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About the Author

Elisa Wood | Editor-in-Chief

Elisa Wood is an award-winning writer and editor who specializes in the energy industry. She is chief editor and co-founder of Microgrid Knowledge and serves as co-host of the publication’s popular conference series. She also co-founded, where she continues to lead a team of energy writers who produce content for energy companies and advocacy organizations.

She has been writing about energy for more than two decades and is published widely. Her work can be found in prominent energy business journals as well as mainstream publications. She has been quoted by NPR, the Wall Street Journal and other notable media outlets.

“For an especially readable voice in the industry, the most consistent interpreter across these years has been the energy journalist Elisa Wood, whose Microgrid Knowledge (and conference) has aggregated more stories better than any other feed of its time,” wrote Malcolm McCullough, in the book, Downtime on the Microgrid, published by MIT Press in 2020.

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