The developing world, including India and China (which comprise more than a third of the world’s population in and of themselves), is moving up the economic ladder.
Today that means a huge appetite for electricity, transportation, manufacturing and things to spend wages on. When you need energy fast, you have to rely on power generation that can be built quickly and operate cheaply with available resources. For now, that means coal-generated power.
As we will show you in a new exclusive report that’s just been completed, both of these behemoths are looking into massive solar and wind projects, as well as improving their coal operations. China is also building nuclear plants, and that will mean huge opportunities to invest, so look for that report soon.
But at the end of the day, to power everywhere that needs to be powered there has to be more.
I try to steer clear of the global warming issue, but the argument goes that because developing nations are using coal, we should use coal — even if we have access to other resources and newer technologies that can cut down on fossil fuel emissions — because it’s cheap and plentiful.
Having watched towns of miners and their families die from black lung and other various diseases directly related to coal mining and living in coal dust, I can say there are more direct factors that would make shifting to new technologies a better alternative than using coal.
And the fact that it’s a centuries-old fuel source says nothing of our can-do spirit as innovators, which I will prove to you in yet another new report we’ve been working on.
Yes, there’s going to be a lot of coal burning for decades to come. But it doesn’t mean we can’t adapt and find new sources of energy, innovate and offer new solutions that are better for us. In 1954, 45 percent of the U.S. population smoked. Today, about 21 percent smoke. But in emerging countries smoking rates are still high. Following the coal-burning logic, why should we quit?
Global warming or not, polluting emerging economies or not, if we can innovate and use all the resources and technology at our disposal to build energy independence that’s sustainable and minimally harmful to our host, we should do it for our own sake. The planet couldn’t care less about us as a species.
We’re investors, and we look to the future.
That’s what oil man and business legend T. Boone Pickens did when he decided to go beyond oil and coal and build an integrated natural gas company that would support natural gas vehicles (NGVs), from golf carts to tractor trailers. It was called Clean Energy Fuels Corp. (CLNE).
FedEx just bought 100 natural gas fueled tractor-trailers and has installed a compressed natural gas fueling station to serve the new fleet at its Oklahoma City Service Center. FedEx contracted with Clean Energy Fuels to design, build and maintain the fueling station. And CLNE just won a contract to supply natural gas to the Washington, DC transit authority.
CLNE is the interesting story of note now because it has become a vertically integrated force in the natural gas industry. From refining operations to distribution to engine conversions (BAF Technologies) to commercial and consumer filling stations (Northstar), to financing the fleets and the filling stations (CE Finance), CLNE has built a network of subsidiaries across North America to make natural gas vehicles more accessible and practical.
The stock has been linked to the fortunes of natural gas prices but the fact is many industries and companies are now converting to natural gas from other fossil fuels. That means in coming years demand will be huge for CLNE products. The stock is near the lowest it has ever been, but is well funded (debt-free until 2018) and many states are now authorizing buying CNG buses and transport vehicles as diesel fuel gets more and more expensive, so it’s a stock to watch and a possible buying opportunity for long-term growth.
— GS Early