|Ken Novak's Weblog
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Tuesday, December 26, 2006
Small car 'Reva' gets big funds:
"Venture funds are now seeing value beyong hot wireless and internet companies in India. India’s first and only electric car manufacturer, REVA Electric Car Company
, has attracted a $ 20 m investment from Draper Fisher Jurveston, Global Environment Fund (GEF) and Mellon HBV Master Global Event Drive Fund LP, according to officials. The company, which is joint venture between the Bangalore-based Maini group and the California-based AEV LLC, is looking at expanding overseas and consolidating its position in global markets with this funding. .. This is GEF’s first investment in India. ..
Reva has sold around 1000 cars in the domestic market and 600 in overseas markets. Apart from the United Kingdom, the company is targetting exports to USA, Norway, Switzerland, Cyprus, Japan, Srilanka and Malta. Its manufacturing plant, located in Banglaore, has an installed capacity of about 6,000 units. .. The entry model is priced around Rs 3 lakh [$6800]. Last year, the company collaborated with designer Dilip Chhabria and Encore, maker of the smallest tablet PC, to launch Reva-NXG. The model gives an extended 200 km per charge compared to the 80 km that is available on the entry model." 7:41:04 AM
Dealing with Tehran:
Assessing U.S. Diplomatic Options Toward Iran by former CIA official Flynt L. Leverett, The Century Foundation, 12/4/2006. An op-ed version of this was blocked from publication by the CIA. It "lays out the essential features of a U.S.-Iranian grand bargain. If Washington does not begin to pursue such an arrangement vigorously and soon, the window for this kind of strategic understanding between the United States and the Islamic Republic is likely to close. Under these circumstances, Iran’s development of at least a nuclear weapons option in the next few years is highly likely.
Thus, if it does not pursue a grand bargain with Tehran, the United States almost certainly will have to take up the more daunting and less potentially satisfying challenges of coping with a nuclear-capable Iran. And the standing of the United States in the world’s most strategically critical region will continue its already disturbing decline." See also commentary
from Newsweek's James Dickey. 7:16:57 AM
SoCal Edison to build massive wind farm:
US wind projects scale up. "Southern California Edison on Thursday announced a deal with an Australian firm to build the largest wind energy facility ever built by a U.S. utility. "This is triple anything that's ever been done. It's enormous," said Stuart Hemphill, director of renewable and alternative power for the Rosemead-based utility that supplies power to much of the Coachella Valley. The 20-year contract, to purchase power from a 50-square-mile wind farm slated for the Tehachapi area about 75 miles northeast of Los Angeles, is with Allco Infrastructure of Sydney. .. The deal with Allco, Hemphill said, allows SoCal Edison to begin to take advantage of the Tehachapi area's 4,500 megawatt wind energy potential." Nearby areas (e.g., Palm Springs) have additional GW of capacity. More details
: "All of California's wind farms together produce 2,300 megawatts of power; the Edison deal by itself would boost that number by 65%. The 1,500 megawatts in the new contract are enough to power nearly 1 million typical homes in Edison's 50,000-square-mile service territory. The Edison project would produce more than twice the electricity of the biggest U.S. wind farm, near Abilene, Texas. ..
In California, all utilities are pushing to meet a goal of generating 20% of the state's power needs from renewable sources by 2010. The looming deadline has triggered a flurry of new contracts by the energy companies lining up so-called green power. Although the deal announced Thursday would double Edison's wind energy production, the utility said it would still struggle to meet the 2010 target.
Company executives said the first batch of power from the project was expected to come online in 2010, but additional supply would have to be phased in over several years. The timeline — and the fate of the entire project — depends on whether and when the utilities can build a transmission line to carry the new wind power from the turbines to the state's power grid .. Edison and other utilities are working with state regulators on plans to construct the necessary transmission line. But the price tag is $1.8 billion, and the approval process for such projects can be contentious and lengthy." I wonder what the rollout of big wind would look like with national government backing, like the Tennessee Valley Authority or Bonneville Power Administration had in past years. This area has 4500 MW capacity, and it's news to grow to half that. 12:37:55 AM
WaterHealth International Closes Series C Funding:
, Inc. (WHI)
today announced the final close of its Series C funding for a total
equity investment of more than $11 million. SAIL Venture Partners,
L.P., anchored the latest investment of $4 million. Series A investor
Plebys International LLC, founded and led by WHI CEO Tralance Addy,
also invested in this round. The new investments are in addition to
the $7.25 million equity investment anchored by Dow Venture Capital
that WHI announced last month.
WHI has more than 450 installations of its water purification and
disinfection systems in developing countries around the world. This
additional funding further strengthens WHI and will allow for
accelerated growth in the company's target markets, primarily India and
South Asia, West Africa, the Philippines and Mexico." This is the product developed by Ashok Gadgil, which I've been following for a few years. Glad to see it get substantial backing. 12:25:16 AM