Volume 2, April 2012
Welcome to the second edition of The Renewable Insight, our quarterly industry newsletter that keeps you current with the latest GCube and industry news.
We are pleased to announce that we hosted our first Advisory Council meeting in February. The Council is made up of 12 of the leading owner/operators and developers in North America and their insurance brokers. The Council discussions allowed participants to exchange ideas and perspectives on their risk management concerns including repair versus replacement, equipment warranties and loss control strategies. The Advisory Council will meet twice a year and the next meeting is scheduled for September. You can read more about the Advisory Council meeting in an article below.
The renewable energy marketplace continues to expand and mature in spite of difficulties and hurdles imposed by the global economy, lending markets and regional and local regulators and governmental agencies. The Annual Energy Outlook in preparation by the US Energy Information Administration forecasts US renewable energy generating capacity will grow 17.3% from year end 2011 (142.6 GW) to year end 2015 (167.3 GW) as approximately 33% of all new generating capacity added in the U.S. is forecasted to be in renewables. The Annual Energy Outlook takes into consideration the scheduled expiration of existing subsidies. We have included link to preliminary report below. The final report will be published soon.
Beyond Federal tax credits, the growth in renewable resources is being driven by state policies, Federal requirements to use biomass-based fuels in private and government transportation, regulations on emissions, and retirement of coal-fired generation. There is also a very distinct move in commercial and industrial sectors to expand the use of renewable generation as an energy security strategy and hedge against projected price increases in fossil fuels.
The implications for insurance and risk management are significant.
GCube Hosts Inaugural
GCube Advisory Council (GCAC)
We recently hosted our first GCAC meeting. This council consists of representatives from 12 of North America’s leading renewable energy companies along with their broker representatives from 6 of the major brokerage houses.
The purpose of the GCAC is to provide a platform for renewable energy industry leaders to exchange ideas and develop industry specific best practices for addressing the exposure to financial loss.
- Through insurance, loss control contractual risk transfer, alternative risk transfer and other irks management strategies.
- Additionally, the Advisory council will become a platform for members to engage other industry participants such as: lenders, investors, law firms, manufacturers and O&M contractors.
Turbine blade manufacturer, Modular Wind also gave a presentation on their new modular wind turbine blade design that will be introduced to the market soon.
Worrying About The Warranty: The Future Wind Industry Innovation & Growth
Senior Vice President
Technical Services & Claims
GCube Insurance Services, Inc.
In 2012, over 15,000 wind turbines are coming off warranty agreements. 8,000 of them are based here in the United States.
What challenges does this present for the development and evolution of the clean energy markets and how is the insurance industry working together with developers to better understand and hedge against this risk?
As with anyone making an investment in large-scale, heavy-duty mechanical equipment, manufacturer warranty programs provide an additional level of support to fixing operating and maintenance costs and securing lender confidence as much as they provide product protection. Implicit within the agreements is a manufacturers’ acknowledgement that they are confident in the durability and the quality of their product and that perhaps most important of all, that it will stand the test of time.
Interview with an Underwriter
Senior Vice President Underwriting
GCube Insurance Services, Inc.
Over the past year, Al Caceres has been responsible for leading our US underwriting and account management teams. During that time, Al has become very familiar with our client’s and their insurance needs. We sat down with him to discuss some of the challenges and innovations currently facing the renewable energy market.
- What are the most significant challenges facing the North American markets from an underwriting perspective in 2012?Some of the major challenges facing the market include more competition coupled with an increase in capacity. We have seen a number of new players entering the renewable energy space without having a true understanding of the industry and the risks involved. In turn, we now see low rates and very aggressive terms and conditions; this is juxtaposed to the rate increases currently found in much of the traditional energy market.
We welcome your feedback and encourage you to share your ideas for topics you would like for us to cover in future issues. Please send your comments or suggestions to
Kathy McConnell, VP of Marketing at email@example.com
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