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The next technology boom may well be based on alternative energy

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by reflexblue, Jun 19, 2008.

  1. reflexblue

    reflexblue PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #91 Jersey

    For those interested in A.E. and maybe investment

    http://www.economist.com/displayStory.cfm?story_id=11565685&fsrc=nwlptwfree


    EVERYONE loves a booming market, and most booms happen on the back of technological change. The world’s venture capitalists, having fed on the computing boom of the 1980s, the internet boom of the 1990s and the biotech and nanotech boomlets of the early 2000s, are now looking around for the next one. They think they have found it: energy.

    Many past booms have been energy-fed: coal-fired steam power, oil-fired internal-combustion engines, the rise of electricity, even the mass tourism of the jet era. But the past few decades have been quiet on that front. Coal has been cheap. Natural gas has been cheap. The 1970s aside, oil has been cheap. The one real novelty, nuclear power, went spectacularly off the rails. The pressure to innovate has been minimal.

    In the space of a couple of years, all that has changed. Oil is no longer cheap; indeed, it has never been more expensive. Moreover, there is growing concern that the supply of oil may soon peak as consumption continues to grow, known supplies run out and new reserves become harder to find.

    The idea.........
     
  2. otis p. driftwood

    otis p. driftwood Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Indeed. There are, for example, a few companies that started wind energy units as spin offs--and those spin offs are now making more than the original companies.

    Quite recently one of the big names--I think it was Buffet but I'm not certain--was trying to get some wind turbines and had to call in a lot of favors (he said) to get them at all, as GE is at present in a huge backlog.

    The problem with wind at present appears to be a lack of ability to store the power generated, but batteries are being rapidly improved as well.

    And there are even newer generations of solar, where the sun's power is magnified and concentrated, instead of being passively collected.
     
  3. MrBigglesWorth

    MrBigglesWorth Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    there will be offshore drilling they will get alot of oil and the people will get their oil fix for the next ten years and the human race will be 10 more years behind development of other sources.
     
  4. reflexblue

    reflexblue PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #91 Jersey

    There isn't that much oil there. The idea that oil co.arn't alloewd to drill is a falsehood. There just isn't enough oil to make it profitable.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  5. shmessy

    shmessy Maude Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #75 Jersey

    The week after Katrina in 2005, I put about 10% of my portfolio in Powershares Wilderhill Clean Energy Index ETF (PBW) - - and never felt better about a purchase in my life. It's up about 28% in that almost 3 year period (about 8% annually) so it hasn't rocked the house yet. I'm really looking at it as a 30-40 year long-term hold.

    Right now, the AE tech progression is great, but a national policy and infrastructure is needed. Keep an eye on a company called "Project a Better Place" run by Shai Agassi (former golden boy at SAP). They are partnering with the Gov's of Israel and the Netherlands to convert those countries' entire auto fleet to electric by 2012-2013. Workable in small countries where people don't drive more than 80-90 miles per day right now. What sets this particular company apart from former efforts is that Renault/Nissan have sunk $250 million into it and they have many other deep pocketed backers. Plus the two Gov'ts are firmly on board. Something to Google and follow.

    Also, a great read is Jeremy Rifkin's The Hydrogen economy. Really goes into a fascinating account of Reflexblue's point on the great leaps forward in history being tied to progessions in energy development.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  6. otis p. driftwood

    otis p. driftwood Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    I don't think it's a falsehood, but I would prefer to see "us" head in another direction. Oil won't run out in our lifetimes, or probably our children's (PC and Peak Oil notwithstanding). That doesn't mean it's the best there is, at all.



    I really think the tide is turning. The last time I tried to have this conversation, 'flex...you weren't here. No one really chimed in except wistah and Patters, and Patters is stuck in the Carter years. As I see it--and I think articles like yours are proving it, we've got a whole generation/generation and a half that's been raised since the 70's. Kids today are more geared to thinking of alt. energy than oil, it appears. Add to that the rapid improvements in science, and you've got a great start.

    If we can get any of these kids past the ritalin.
     
  7. reflexblue

    reflexblue PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #91 Jersey

    Thats why I'm going back to the idea of geo-thermal. And when i say that i'm talking about it being at least a third of the energy used to produce commercial electricity for homes,schools factories etc. I know you've read up on it but here's an article about why it isn't being used as much as it should be now.
    http://www.economist.com/specialreports/displaystory.cfm?story_id=11565660
     
  8. reflexblue

    reflexblue PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #91 Jersey

    Me too,at first i didn't think of green tech as a good idea but i'm going to put about 10K into foriegn A.E. companies. My wife is also,and has been The Calvert fund i believe.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  9. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    How do you get into an ETF ? All I've done is with Vanguard Mutual Funds; is there some company like Vanguard you do ETFs through (yes, this is an embarrassing question - so be it ;))
     
  10. otis p. driftwood

    otis p. driftwood Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    I had been meaning to ask you which one you went with. Isn't PBW a little heavier on tech though? Semiconductors and so forth? I don't know, I just went and looked at it and see a lot of small cap solar plays, so maybe I got my wires crossed somewhere while I was researching. It beat the S&P, though, I believe...so what the heck, right?

    Still...10% is a pretty big chunk.
     
  11. otis p. driftwood

    otis p. driftwood Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    You buy the ETF's through a broker, Ameritrade or Scottrade or whatever, that's why they're called exchange traded funds...they're set up to mimic some managed fund or another, usually.
     
  12. shmessy

    shmessy Maude Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #75 Jersey


    Not embarrassing at all, BF. ETF's (Exchange Traded Funds) are rather new. Any general brokerage account out there, where you can buy individual stocks and bonds along with Mutuals can give you ETF options also. ETF's are funds that really aren't as actively managed as Mutuals (hence, lower internal fees), and you can trade them DURING the day like stocks (as opposed to Mutuals where you must wait until the end of the day to have your trade processed).
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  13. otis p. driftwood

    otis p. driftwood Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    They aren't managed, so you miss out on having an actual smart person watching your money, OTOH they don't charge you for that either. There are a lot of cool ETFs...as they've gotten popular they're very specialized. You can get them to just track pig bellies, say...or there's one DUG that just shorts oil...so if the oil bubble bursts, you could make a lot of money...maybe...LOL...
     
  14. shmessy

    shmessy Maude Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #75 Jersey

    PBW is definitely big into solar (and wind). It also dabbles in companies that SERVICE those companies (so you may have some holdings in there that are peripherally related to AE).

    I agree, 10% is a pretty big chunk, and it is my most aggressive holding, but my wife and I are both 43 and we have a longterm time horizon for this allocation slice. It's definitely not for everybody.

    BTW, to Reflexblue, I like the Calvert Funds - - they do a very good job in the Socially Conscious area (and I LOVE their incomparable Calvert Short Duration Income A fund - CSDAX - Greg Habeeb is a genius). Their Global Alt Energy fund (I think that is what you were referring to) is very new.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  15. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    I want to try and stay away from actual tradables because I don't trust myself ;) I may look around for a clean energy mutual fund where I can just put money and leave it. That's more my style - I've found through fantasy sports that I tend to buy high and sell low ;)
     
  16. reflexblue

    reflexblue PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #91 Jersey

    Calvert has been doing well over the last 2-3 years as far as returns.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008
  17. otis p. driftwood

    otis p. driftwood Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    It's human nature to do that. I have the opposite problem...I keep sh!t...LOL. I've got one holding that's gone up almost $30/share since I bought it...and I can't bring myself to sell because I'm afraid it's going higher...and it's got a $2.75/share 16% divvy yield. I'm also afraid to buy anymore...in case it doesn't go higher...LMAO!

    I'm pathetic sometimes.
    :bricks:
     
  18. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    I'm am starting to realize that at age 41 I should be wanting the stock market to go down as much as possible - as it will be at X when I retire, the more shares I can buy now as far from X as possible, the better. It's really hard to want to lose money, though.

    Maybe I'll visit Ameritrade for this one thing - can't find mutual funds for alt. energy except for ones with high loads.
     
  19. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    That's how I am with my Vanguard Energy fund. I've more than doubled my money and have about 25% of my Mutual Fund money in it (10% of total retirement as the 401K is separate) but it's so hard to move anything out.
     
  20. reflexblue

    reflexblue PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #91 Jersey

    "BTW, to Reflexblue, I like the Calvert Funds - - they do a very good job in the Socially Conscious area (and I LOVE their incomparable Calvert Short Duration Income A fund - CSDAX - Greg Habeeb is a genius). Their Global Alt Energy fund (I think that is what you were referring to) is very new." Shmessy

    I was,to the "socially concious and to the new GAE I don't want to sound like something I'm not a Financial analyst,or adviser,but in being "socially concious" they look for things like AE that are pollution free. That being the case I would think they would have a pretty good handle on new forms of energy,and who's developing them.
    __________________
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2008

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