Venture Capital Is ‘All In’ When It Comes to Alternative Energy, Right?

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Many believe that Venture Capital is “smart money” and that those in the know, know where best to invest their dollars. Yes, VC are in the know, and they have a team of people who are in the know, and they definitely know how to invest and realize that with high rewards come high risks – which is something they duly accept. Should you follow their money with your own investments? Maybe and maybe not, as there have been some catastrophic failures; remember WebVan for instance – nothing like blowing a billion dollars on something that never once turned a profit, of course that is just one example the list of big time failures in silicon valley is legendary – then again so are their successes right?

Not long ago, I had a think tanker type try to persuade me that “alternative energy” was where it was at, and that I should jump on board and get over my self-righteous comments about the flaws in Global Warming Theory. He told me that; “Venture Capitalists are betting big bucks on alternative energy and you should therefore support wind and solar technologies.”

Okay but, the VC who are betting on new innovative technologies today are betting on bringing future technologies to market, that bet alone tells you that the current solar and wind are not cutting it, if they were they wouldn’t be trying to better the current technologies. It also shows us how marketplace money follows the government gifts, subsidies, investments, and tax rules, which are busy lop-siding markets. The VCs want to cash in on the flow of money generously stolen from the treasury but government politicians from the people. The people pay twice, once for the subsidies, then again for higher energy costs, we are screwing the people and since this about energy we are hurting all industries with higher cost to compete in global markets. Just because VCs are pumping money into that balloon doesn’t mean it won’t pop – Dot Com Burst had VC playing “all in” at the top too, in 1999. “Confessions of a Venture Capitalist” is a fun read.

VC’s are betting on the future; Hydrogen Cell, Battery Tech, Distributive Energy Concepts, Smart Grid, IoT, all of which are about efficiency, good, let them bring it to scale, not the government through subsidies. Bringing current technologies to scale has been an ROI disaster in so many cases. It’s really hard to compete against all the energy packed into fossil fuel molecules, but I figure eventually it will be done. Pushing it forward is good if one believes they can, and energy companies will buy energy generated from any source based on price and regulations.