Burbo Bank Wind Farm Now Fully Operational

Last week, Haresh Patel, CEO of Mercatus Inc, a software solutions and management services company for energy investorswas in New York to discuss the current state of renewable energy industries at the 12th Annual REFF-Wall Street Conference. Their Energy Investment Management (EIM) software has processed over 50 GW of renewable energy power at the utility, commercial and residential scale. He took the time to to answer a few of my questions over the future of clean energy, both domestically and internationally, following the June release of Mercatus Inc energy insights report 

Q. What role do you consider Mercatus Inc to have as clean energy becomes a more viable option for businesses? 

HP: We view our product and the services we offer as technologically agnostic, meaning we merely provide the service for our current and prospective clients, whether they work in clean energy or fossil fuel industries. But in my opinion, the current economic trends are dictating that renewable energy has become a significant market force, particularly when you see the growth across wind, solar and storage.

Q. How important will federal and state energy policy be in the development of clean energy industries? 

HP: While there is no doubt that policy is always important in terms of initiating parameters for any industry to develop, ultimately the market will demand how policy is formulated. The economics of current energy markets are enforcing policymakers to adjust their  objectives to cater for the growth of renewable energy industries. Economics are causing a disruption of traditional energy policy structures.

Q. How important do you see the growth of energy storage for renewable energy industries? 

HP: Once again, the economics are demanding that utilities and regulators must adjust their protocol to the demands of the population for energy storage, microgrids and yieldcos. The economics are simply too compelling in terms of cost-competitiveness for the consumer, for example the long-term affordability and re-financing models of companies such as Tesla.

Q. How will the end of the Investment Tax Credit (ITC) in 2016 affect clean energy companies? 

HP: The optimum word in this context is planning. Companies know there will be shifts to the market post-2016, it is the companies who are prepared for this eventuality that will strive and ultimately survive in the post-ITC environment. This will involve preparing for market adjustments in terms of diversifying their investment portfolio outside the United States and building up adequate infrastructure in terms of cost structures and capital.

Haresh Patel co-found Mercatus Inc in 2009 as an energy finance and services organization. Today, the Mercatus Energy Investment Management (EIM) solution is the industry’s leading software for global energy investors. He has previously worked with Agilent Technology, PMC-Sierra and Texas Instruments. He served as Sr. Vice President of Sales and Marketing at WJ Communications, Inc., Vice President of Worldwide Sales and Marketing for Agilent`s $2B Semiconductor Products Group, and Vice President Sales at PMC Sierra Inc. Haresh has completed Senior Management programs at Harvard Business School and Stanford University Business School and holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame.