The transition to cleantech – some would call it a revolution – inevitably entails change, which implies risk. In turn, this implies that some things will fail. We’ve already seen more than a few failures, and we’ll no doubt see many more. As long as the successes outweigh the failures, that’s all that ultimately matters. […]
About Richard T. Stuebi
Richard Stuebi has 25 years of experience as an executive, entrepreneur, and consultant in the energy industry, with the last 12 years focused on advanced energy technologies and business opportunities.
Richard is a Managing Director of the venture capital firm Early Stage Partners, where he manages cleantech investment activities.
Richard founded NextWave Energy in 1999 to help clients capitalize on the transition to an advanced energy economy. He continues to serve private sector clients on various business development topics, as well as civic organizations in Northeast Ohio as an outgrowth of his 2006-2010 role as Fellow for Energy and Environmental Advancement at The Cleveland Foundation.
Earlier in his career, Richard was a senior vice president at Louis Dreyfus, the global commodity-trading firm, and was a management consultant in the energy practice of McKinsey & Co. Richard began his career in the late 1980s at ICF Resources.
Richard is a member of the Board of Directors of EnLink Geoenergy Services and MAR Systems.
He earned degrees in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1984) and Stanford University (1986).
Entries by Richard T. Stuebi
Recently, I came across this very interesting thought-piece, “Cleantech Marketing Isn’t IT Marketing”, written by Aaron Fike, the founder and CEO of Energy Cache. Energy Cache has developed a rather unusual energy storage technology. As described here, Energy Cache is offering a solution that is a hybrid of ski-lifts and mining technology, hauling gravel in […]
Happy new year everyone. As we reflect upon the year now past us, it’s also that time of year to look ahead. For the cleantech sector, Dallas Kachan from Kachan & Co. recently put his neck on the line with his “Predictions for Cleantech in 2013”. It’s a good read, well-reasoned. The sound-bite version: Cleantech […]
For those who want an overview of the current state of the lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery sector, the fall 2012 issue of Batteries International is just the thing. It’s not a pretty picture that’s painted. Beyond the well-publicized bankruptcies of A123 and Ener1, the general sentiment espoused is that players in the Li-ion sector face tough […]
Two weeks ago, I sat on a panel of eminent (that is, other than myself) cleantech venture capitalists at the New England Venture Summit to discuss our sector as we approach the end of 2012. The basic theme being explored was whether we should be optimistic or pessimistic about the current state of affairs for […]
At the end of November, the U.S. Department of Energy announced that it had selected Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago to host the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research (JCESR), and bestowed upon it a $120 million grant over 5 years, alongside a $35 million commitment for a new 45,000 square foot facility from […]
Last week, 129 signatories sent an open letter to the Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-Moon, that said in part: “Current scientific knowledge does not substantiate your assertions” recently made that climate change is causing more extreme weather events (such as last month’s disastrous Hurricane Sandy), and that the cost of continued inaction […]
The phrase “Black Swan” was coined in the book of the same name by author Nassim Taleb to describe an event that is hugely important and influential that was not anticipated but yet in retrospect could have been. September 11, 2001 is a classic example of a Black Swan. It was only a failure of […]
Watching the video feeds from the New York and New Jersey areas in the wake of Sandy reminded me of the images seven years ago from New Orleans being decimated by Katrina. Other than perhaps providing a warning not to call a particular geographic area “New” anything, what do these storms tell us? Like Katrina […]
Since tomorrow’s election is heavily focused on the appropriate scope of government, I have spent a little time lately reflecting upon the proper role of government in the energy sector. In regards to the U.S. Presidential race, I will refrain from analyzing the respective policies and stances concerning energy of the two candidates. This recent […]
On October 12, the lithium-ion battery maker A123 (NASDAQ: AONE) essentially ran the white flag up the pole: filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, agreeing to sell its automotive-related assets to Johnson Controls (NYSE: JCI), and fielding bids for its grid-storage business. This is a big come-down from a company that not long ago had a […]
Last week, I served as a judge for the North Central regional contest of the Cleantech Open in Minneapolis. The Cleantech Open is a annual contest to identify the most promising cleantech ventures from across the U.S. (along with some foreign entries). This year’s event will be held on November 8-9 in San Jose. Advancing […]
Being a venture capitalist is not easy. Being a cleantech venture capitalist is especially not easy. I remember Ira Ehrenpreis of Technology Partners, one of the deans of the cleantech VC community, commenting archly several years ago at one of the too-many cleantech investment conferences: “We need a poster child for cleantech venture capital success.” Well, generally speaking, […]
I have to admit: it’s hard for me to be terribly enthusiastic about electric utilities. I know a fair bit about them; by my count, I’ve served about ten utilities in various consulting roles during my career. While generalizations are always dangerous, for the most part, I think it’s safe to say that electric utilities […]
One of the most hyped trends in high-tech is “big data”: the accumulation, integration, synthesis and interpretation of enormous amounts of data from disparate sources. Big data is being touted not only as a driver of increased efficiencies for companies, but also increased revenues: as customers indicate or reveal their preferences through their behavior and […]
Earlier this month, I turned 50 years old. Such milestones are natural occasions for reflection. Beyond recalling many of the phases and individual episodes of my life, my reflection included a consideration of how the world had changed in the 50 years in which I had lived. And, naturally, given my profession, I pondered what it would have […]
In the cleantech sector, pretty much everyone knows the acronym RPS, for Renewable Portfolio Standards. Since the first RPS policy in the U.S., implemented in Iowa in the late 1990s, 30 states have passed similar policies to promote the installation of renewable energy projects and expedite penetration (overcoming the ambivalence or outright opposition of utilities) of renewable […]
I’ve been working with new energy inventions and their creators for almost 15 years now. I don’t know how many times I’ve heard a new technology described as “the Holy Grail”: solving all of the world’s problems forever. Well, here’s the newest one using the Holy Grail cliche: a supposedly carbon-neutral method of using microbes […]
There may be people who understand the big picture about air conditioning better than Stan Cox, but the list is surely a short one. Cox, who wrote Losing Our Cool: Uncomfortable Truths About Our Air-Conditioned World, has also just written an excellent brief article called “Cooling A Warming Planet: A Global Air Conditioning Surge”. In […]
For several years, the U.S. military has been one of the most active proponents and early-adopters of renewable energy and alternative fuels, with their Operational Energy Strategy. Why? Several reasons: 1. Fuel delivered to the remote front-lines such as in Afghanistan for use in power generation and transportation has an “all-in” cost of $400/gallon. Any energy source […]