Green is the New Black


New York – One of the pillars of Barack Obama’s discourse before and after he occupied the first seat in the US (and perhaps the world), is the need to protect the environment through setting greenhouse gas limits and propelling renewable energy usage. As this discourse translates into concrete actions and legislation, investors can find unique advantages in two kinds of research: alternative energy and policy research.

Green promises and expectations

Obama’s discourse of environment protection has moved closer to materializing in the last few days. Yesterday, for example, the president signed a “Presidential Proclamation” for the 2009 Earth Day, affirming the importance of actively addressing the threat of global warming. The proclamation highlights, besides the dangers all living beings are facing because of global warming, the great opportunities for innovation, job creation, and industry development that this situation brings. Obama conveyed his vision of these opportunities to the workers at a wind power plant in Iowa in these words:

“The nation that leads the world in creating new energy sources will be the nation that leads the 21st century global economy. America can be that nation. America must be that nation.”

The president’s expressed willingness to address global warming through concrete legislative action is accompanied (and pushed) by high expectations among the North American population on Obama’s effective implementation of his discourse. In fact, a poll published by Gallup yesterday indicated that 79% of the interviewed population thinks that Obama “will do a good job protecting the environment.”

Both, political discourse and the population’s expectations are materializing at the national and international levels. The US congress is currently considering cap-and-trade enforceable legislation that will apply to pollutants such as manufacturers, utilities and vehicles.
At the international level, the hopes are centered on concrete efforts by US negotiators who are aiming at an eventual US signature and ratification of the legally binding agreement to be signed in Copenhagen this December. This international instrument is intended to replace the Tokyo Protocol, and aims at reducing the collective emission of greenhouses. The Tokyo Protocol came into force in 2005. It was not ratified by the US, one of the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gases, with the argument that the instrument would not only harm the country’s economy, but that it lacks necessary restrictions to emerging economies.

What’s in store for investors and independent research firms?

The overall environment of green concerns also presents opportunities to investors who tap into the developments on environmental matters. Independent research firms covering energy and/or policy issues offer a head start to investors.

Integrity Research Associates has been tracking down firms in these areas globally for the past several years. Integrity’s in-depth knowledge of the research space, along with a comprehensive database of research firms, covers not only the big players in these two key segments (energy and policy) but also smaller boutique and newer firms offering unique content. With the Obama Administration’s renewed focus on these topics, finding unique content has become more important than ever before.


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