Using the same logic,I had questioned the massive amount of USA taxpayer money being given as a cash grant to build almost 4-5 GW of Solar Thermal Plants in California.Most of these solar thermal projects were approved in the last 6 months of 2010 so that they could be eligible for the Treasury Cash Grant under Rule 1603.I seem to have been vindicated quite early with 2 of these giant solar thermal projects being developed by Tessera Solar have run into trouble.The CEO of the company has already left and many of the employees have been fired.Strange for a company that has won multi billion projects in hand.The parent Irish company NTR is reportedly looking to shelve the plants as it does not have enough money for 5% of the total project costs required before 2010 end.

Asian Development Bank (ADB) may rescue the JNNSM process which seems to be headed for certain problems.The Bank is committing to provide loan guarantees for under 30 MW projects to Indian Banks and upto 25% equity investment into >30 MW projects.Note debt financing is a major issue which was talked about by the biggest Indian utilities for not participating.Note ADB has already committed to setting up 500 MW Renewable Energy Capacity in India in JV with NTPC.This will further increase ADB’s exposure to Solar Energy in India.It remains to be seen if ADB give equity and debt to many of these projects which don’t seem to be feasible at these prices.Will ADB willing to take losses in these ventures and provide loans to many of these unknown firms with no track record.

A Number of Japanese Companies have been entering the Solar Energy Market following in the footsteps of Japanese solar leaders like Sharp,Kyocera,Mitsubishi and others.Toshiba was a surprising entrant into the Solar EPC market with a solar plant planned in Easter Europe.Now Mitsui Engineering and Shipping,one of Japan’s huge zaibatsus is planning a foray into the solar energy market as well.The Company is being supported in its initiative by METI which will collaborate with the Tunisian government in setting up a combined gas solar hybrid plant.A 5 MW Solar CSP plant will be set up by 2013 to demonstrate the technology.

NextEra Energy Resources which was previously known as FPL Energy has bought a number of Solar Energy Generating Assets in the past few months.NextEra is the largest Renewable Energy utility in the USA with around 18 GW of Capacity out of which around 6.5 GW is Gas and 7.5 GW of Wind Powered Capacity plus 2.5 GW of Nuclear Energy.NextEra Energy with its long experience in Green Energy Generation has now decided to expand its Solar Asset Portfolio buying equity stakes in Solar Thermal as well as Solar PV Farms in USA and Canada.NextEra Energy is already the biggest Wind Energy Producer in the United States and on the way to become the biggest Solar Energy Producer as well.While Wind Energy is facing uncertain times in the USA,Solar Energy is growing at a rapid clip driven by the sharp fall in Solar Panel Costs which have more than halved in the last 2 years.

India’s JNNSM Phase 1 which is targeting 1000 MW of Solar Power Capacity by 2013 is in jeopardy due to irrational bidding,financing and small size.The 150 MW Solar PV and ~500 MW of Solar Thermal Capacity which has been put to bidding is going to see massive discounts.This will eventually lead to project winners abandoning these projects or delaying it inordinately,leading to a failure of the first phase.India Solar Thermal Bidding has already seen Massive Discounts from the base prices of Rs 15.31 set by CERC and the Solar PV project bidding for 150 MW is going to see equally ferocious discounts.Tata Power,which is India’s largest private utility is staying away from these auctions due to the above problems.Renewable Energy in India has a huge growth potential with Solar Energy the brightest Green Energy Sector.This has attracted companies in droves leading to hyper competition for the first phase of India’s Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission.However huge competition in this subsidy driven sector is not necessarily good for the growth of Renewable Energy as irrational bidding by small players would lead to project failures.

The US Government has recently approved a number of Large Scale Solar Thermal and Photovoltaic Projects as Renewable Energy Projects rush to meet the December 2010 Deadline for getting the 30% Subsidy Cash Grants from the US Treasury.California has been leading the way with gigawatts of solar thermal plants being approved.However these projects are facing resistance from local groups due to different reasons.Green Activists are questioning the Environment Friendliness of these projects due to the harmful effects on endangered desert wildlife.While some projects have dedicated millions of dollars for the Rehabilitation and Resettlement of Tortoises and other wildlife,Green NGOs are not convinced.The 660 MW,$2 Billion Tessera Solar Thermal Plant has been put under a review of its approval due to protests that the approval was done with haste and without following proper procedures.Note Large Solar Thermal Projects need hundreds of acres of land and are being frequently built on public land.