Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Pt II, GE and the Enron Playbook: "GE, BP Join Industry Demands for Carbon Regulations"

We left part I with Mr. Immelt saying:
The interaction between government and business will change forever. In a reset economy, the government will be a regulator; and also an industry policy champion, a financier, and a key partner […] I think this environment presents an opportunity of a lifetime....
Here's the headline story from Bloomberg:
General Electric Co. and BP Plc are demanding governments enact regulations to cut emissions blamed for global warming to create new investment opportunities and stave off the growth in pollution.

GE, the second-biggest maker of wind turbines, and BP, Europe’s second-largest oil company, joined other multinational manufacturers and service providers demanding leaders agree at UN climate talks to cut emissions 85 percent by 2050, they said in a statement. They also want a global carbon market created.

“These are difficult and challenging times for the international business community and a poor outcome from the UN climate-change conference in Copenhagen will only make them more so,” the companies said. “Delay is not an option.”

About 100 heads of state are meeting this week at United Nations headquarters in New York to discuss ways to cope with and slow climate change. The UN is leading negotiations in Copenhagen in December to forge a global treaty to reduce CO2 from coal plants and cars and limit warming to 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) by the end of this century.

“This is the first and only time that world leaders are meeting before a new deal on climate change has to be agreed in December,” Yvo de Boer, head of the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change, said yesterday in an interview.

The companies that signed the statement, which include Siemens AG and Rio Tinto Plc, are also demanding rules to keep developing countries from logging tropical forests and money to help the poor adapt to a warming planet....MORE

Part III is above. Here's how GE got into the wind biz:

GE completes Enron Wind acquisition; Launches GE Wind Energy

ATLANTA, GA (May 10, 2002) - GE Power Systems today officially entered the wind power industry, announcing that its acquisition of certain assets of Enron Wind Corp. has been completed. The new GE business, GE Wind Energy (www.gewindenergy.com), will be headed by Steven Zwolinski, who has been serving as general manager of GE Global Hydro.

GE announced in February its intent to acquire the global supplier of wind turbine generators. Over the past three months, all bankruptcy court and regulatory approvals required to complete the acquisition have been received.

"The wind power industry offers tremendous opportunities for growth and continued technology development," said Zwolinski. "There are synergies from several GE businesses, in areas such as plastics, transportation gearing applications and power controls, that can be applied to wind turbine technology. Our Six Sigma quality procedures can drive further improvements in wind turbine generators. And our global sales force can deliver the latest wind power technologies to regions throughout the world."

Zwolinski continued, "Adding these valuable wind resources to GE Power Systems' line of environmentally friendly power generation options supports our on-going commitment to provide customers with the broadest possible range of clean energy solutions for the 21 st century."

The wind energy sector is expected to grow about 20 percent a year, with an emphasis on Europe, the U.S. and Latin America. While Europe has been a focus of wind power activity, opportunities remain in places like France and Italy, which have very little wind power at this point. GE also will look for opportunities to expand wind power technology into other regions of the world, such as Japan and China, Zwolinski noted.

GE has acquired Enron Wind's fully integrated wind power capabilities including power plant design, engineering and site selection, and operation and maintenance services. Enron's line of wind turbine generators includes units with outputs of 750 and 900 kilowatts and 1.5 megawatts, while larger systems of 3.2 and 3.6 megawatts are in development. Existing wind farm assets will remain with Enron....