Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Canadian Green Investments

Canada is an interesting case. Despite being a signatory to the Kyoto protocol, and making all the "harumph, harumph" noises that membership seems to encourage, Canada will blow right through the agreement that they voluntarily entered into. Last I saw, they were about 26% above where they pledged to be. Harumph.

It's not just the current Conservative government, which came into office two years ago, today. The Liberal party ran the show from Nov. '93 to Feb. '06. In those 13 years they didn't do much more than talk. And talk. And talk.

So what's the answer? Subsidies! Some of the best in the world. You ask for an example?
Ontario's Standard Offer Program has a solar feed-in tariff of $.42 per kwh!

Mo’ money
How's that grab ya?

Here's the story from the Financial Post:
Save the world and make money at the same time

..."Everybody's branding themselves now as a green investment," says Sucheta Rajagopal, a certified financial planner with Hampton Securities in Toronto. "Everybody has a sustainability report, but what do those reports really say? One of the challenges ahead for investors is identifying who's really doing what they say they're doing, and who's hopping on the bandwagon."

Here's something to think about: The best performing stock on the Toronto Stock Exchange in 2007 was a Toronto-based company called Timminco Ltd., a maker of specialty metals used in solar-power applications. Over the course of the year, its shares went ballistic, closing on Dec. 31 at almost $22, up from 30¢ on the year's first day of trading - an increase of more than 7,000%.

The Timminco example, though extreme, proves that savvy stocks pickers certainly can profit from investing in environmental business. But most Canadian investors don't have the time or the expertise to build their own portfolios from scratch. Most opt for the relative safety and predictability of managed funds. And, with one or two exceptions, most of the green-labelled vehicles available today are simply too new to have track records that demonstrate their ability to generate strong returns....MORE

Here's another of our posts on Canada:
Solar tax breaks, rebates in Canada

Including the hit:
"free money" for Oregon business owners who invest in solar.

That headline is a quote, I couldn't make it up. This either: In many cases, the incentives and credits paid end up being more than the actual cost of the system.

Alrighty then, time to hit the Oregon Trail.