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The changing face of coal use in both China and India is likely to reduce the projected global carbon emissions growth by approximately two to three billion tonnes by 2030 compared to forecasts made a year ago, according to a new briefing by the Climate Action Tracker. In a new Climate Action Tracker (CAT) Update published on Monday, the combined work of Climate Analytics, Ecofys, and the New Climate Institute explained that “positive developments” in China and India’s use of coal are likely to reduce the projected global carbon emissions by between two to three billion tonnes by 2030, as compared to CAT’s predictions a year ago. Further, the “highly adverse rollbacks” being made by US President Donald Trump “are unlikely to have a major impact on global emissions by 2030.” Specifically, CAT believes that both China and India look set to “overachieve” their Paris Agreement climate pledges. China’s coal consumption has been in decline for awhile now, three consecutive years (2013–2016) and many believe that this trend will only continue. Earlier this year, China’s National Bureau of Statistics revealed that the country’s total energy consumption had increased by 1.4% in 2016, but that the country’s coal consumption had declined by 4.7%. Meanwhile, India’s government has stated that it believes some of its planned coal-fired power plants will be unneeded. Additionally, the country is implementing policies to boost renewable energy capacity and reduce coal imports, which CAT believes could “see a significant slowing down in the growth of CO2 emissions over the next decade.” “Five years ago, the idea of either China or India stopping—or even slowing—coal use was considered an insurmountable hurdle, as coal-fired power plants were thought by many to be necessary to satisfy the energy demands of these countries,” said Bill Hare of Climate Analytics. “Recent observations show they are now on the way toward overcoming this challenge.” Meanwhile, while there is still significant cause for concern over the current policy moves being made in the US by its new President, CAT does not believe that these changes will have a significant impact on global emissions levels by 2030. “The highly adverse rollbacks of US climate policies by the Trump Administration, if fully implemented and not compensated by other actors, are projected to flatten US emissions instead of continuing on a downward trend,” explained Prof Niklas Höhne, of NewClimate Institute. Specifically, the developments we are seeing in China and India are set to significantly outweigh any negative moves we see in the US. “In the last ten years, the energy market has transformed: The price of renewable energy from wind and solar has dropped drastically,” said Yvonne Deng of Ecofys, a Navigant company. “Renewables are now cost-competitive and being built at a much faster rate than coal-fired power plants.” Check out our new 93-page EV report. Join us for an upcoming Cleantech Revolution Tour conference! Keep up to date with all the hottest cleantech news by subscribing to our (free) cleantech daily newsletter or weekly newsletter, or keep an eye on sector-specific news by getting our (also free) solar energy newsletter, electric vehicle newsletter, or wind energy newsletter.


News Article | May 15, 2017
Site: www.washingtonpost.com

The U.S. will fall far short of its Paris climate goals, thanks to the environmental policy rollbacks carried out under the Trump administration, a new analysis suggests. The news comes as President Trump is still considering a formal withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement, with a possible decision expected after the Group of Seven meeting later this month. But China and India are on track to overachieve on their climate pledges, the analysis adds, meaning their efforts may help make up for shortcomings in the U.S. The study was released Monday by the Climate Action Tracker, a joint project among nonprofit organizations Climate Analytics and NewClimate Institute and climate consulting agency Ecofys that monitors government action on climate change. [Trump will punt decision on the Paris climate agreement until after the G-7, Spicer says] China and India “are going to slow the global growth in CO2 emissions significantly, the United States’ actions under President Trump will offset that a bit, but not sufficient to actually stop that slowing of the global growth of emissions,” said Bill Hare, CEO of Climate Analytics and a senior scientist with the organization, at a Monday news conference to introduce the new findings. Under the Paris climate agreement, the U.S. pledged to lower its carbon emissions by 26 to 28 percent below their 2005 levels by the year 2025. To meet that goal, the analysis points out, the federal government would have had to implement the full climate action plan outlined by the Obama administration — which involved a variety of carbon-cutting strategies, including the expansion of clean energy, energy efficiency programs and more advanced transportation technology, and most of all, the Clean Power Plan. As of the end of the Obama administration, the full climate action plan had yet to be fully rolled out. But if all currently implemented environmental policies were to remain in place, including the Clean Power Plan, the analysis suggests that the U.S. would only manage to reduce emissions 10 percent below their 2005 levels by the year 2025. Without the Clean Power Plan, the study puts this number at just 7 percent below 2005 levels. Under the Trump administration — which has already canceled the implementation of Obama’s climate action plan, rolled back a number of environmental regulations and placed a hold on the ongoing lawsuit surrounding the Clean Power Plan — the assessment suggests U.S. emissions will likely stop declining altogether and flatline instead. Coming to this conclusion was a challenge, according to Niklas Höhne, a founding partner at the NewClimate Institute and a professor at Wageningen University in the Netherlands, because the future of U.S. environmental policy under Trump remains so uncertain. “The Trump administration has said that they want to take away and roll back policies that have already been implemented, and the question is whether that will really happen,” he noted at the news conference. The Clean Power Plan, for instance, is facing a likely demise. And the future of other policies, such as the stringent fuel economy standards implemented under the Obama administration, remain even less sure. The Trump administration has reopened a review of the standards at the urging of the automobile manufacturing industry and other critics — meaning it may or may not decide to weaken or repeal them at a later date. But the analysis concludes that if these climate policies are removed, and they’re not adequately compensated for by other local-level efforts — an outcome that, for now, appears likely — “emissions could, in our best estimate, be kind of flat for the next few years, and the U.S. would be on a path definitely to fail to meet its” Paris goal, Höhne said. But the analysis finds that China and India are both on track to exceed their goals under the Paris agreement, meaning they may be able to largely pick up the U.S.’s slack. Under the Paris agreement, China has pledged to peak its carbon dioxide emissions by the year 2030 and increase the non-fossil fuel share of its energy consumption to around 20 percent. And India has pledged to boost its non-fossil fuel energy share to at least 40 percent by 2030. Now, new developments in both countries’ energy landscapes have put them ahead of the game in terms of meeting their goals. Largely thanks to a decrease in coal consumption in both countries, the analysis suggests that annual emissions from the two countries combined are on track to be about 2 billion to 3 billion tons lower in the year 2030 than previous estimates have indicated. This is more than enough to outweigh the actions of the Trump administration, which the analysis suggests will likely make a difference of about 400 million tons of annual carbon dioxide emissions by the year 2030 compared to what they would have been otherwise. In India, a new draft energy plan released late last year significantly reduced the country’s plans for additional coal capacity through the year 2027 — cutting the plans from about 230 additional gigawatts of coal capacity to just 50 gigawatts. The plan suggests that by 2027, more than half the nation’s electricity capacity will come from non-fossil fuel sources. And China — the world’s greatest consumer of coal and emitter of greenhouse gases — has now seen three consecutive years of declining coal consumption. “It is unclear whether these last three years are merely a pause in a steady growth or whether this is a sign of China having reached its peak in coal consumption,” said Yvonne Deng, a managing consultant at Ecofys. “But if it is a peak, and if coal consumption continues to decrease at a similar rate, then this could lead to emissions in 2030 being around one to two gigatons lower than our estimate last year. And combining these effects of these two reductions in emissions from decreasing coal use in India and China, we estimate that CO2 emissions in 2030 could reduce by around two to three gigatons.” The actions of other governments — particularly the European Union — will also remain significant factors in the future of global emissions. And previous analyses have pointed out that even if all participating nations lived up to their pledges under the Paris agreement, it would likely still not be enough to keep global temperatures within 1.5 to 2 degrees of their preindustrial levels, the globally determined climate goal established at Paris. In fact, one recent study indicated that the world is on track to blow past the 1.5-degree goal within the next 15 years. To prevent this from happening, the Paris agreement encourages nations to continually strengthen and update their own pledges — the exact opposite of what is happening in the U.S. “We are always saying that countries need to ramp up their ambition, so increase their ambition, and in the U.S. it’s going in the wrong direction,” Höhne said.


Stop me if you've heard this one: The U.S. shouldn't act to cut its planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions because it would harm the economy while China and India are building coal plants and emitting whatever they want. That is an argument that opponents of climate action, mainly in the Republican Party, have used for decades in order to oppose measures to cut planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions. It's one that President Donald Trump himself has made, as has his Environmental Protection Agency administrator, Scott Pruitt, in recent months. But increasingly, it's not based in reality. SEE ALSO: 9-year-old girl seeks clean air for her generation, sues Indian government over pollution Two new reports show that China and India are moving faster than expected to cut their greenhouse gas emissions and pollution woes, while scaling up renewable energy resources. The speed and extent of the actions in these two developing nations are hugely consequential for what happens to global emissions during Trump's presidency, since the U.S. is backing away from its leadership position on this issue. According to an analysis released at a round of United Nations climate talks in Bonn on Monday, China and India could more than compensate for the United States' failure to meet its proposed emissions cuts under the Paris Climate Agreement. What's changing is China and India's coal use. Experts from Climate Analytics, Ecofys, and the New Climate Institute, which together run the Climate Action Tracker, say that global carbon emissions are likely to be about 2 to 3 billion tonnes lower in 2030 compared to previous forecasts. This could offset Trump's climate change rollbacks, such as killing the EPA's Clean Power Plan and trying to revive the moribund coal sector. The Trump effect on the climate would only cause an uptick in carbon emissions of about 0.4 billion tonnes of carbon, the group found. “The highly adverse rollbacks of U.S. climate policies by the Trump Administration, if fully implemented and not compensated by other actors, are projected to flatten US emissions instead of continuing on a downward trend,” said Niklas Hohne, of NewClimate Institute, in a press release. According to the Tracker, which keeps tabs on countries' commitments and whether they are living up to them, China’s coal consumption decreased from 2013 through 2016, with a slow decline expected to continue. This is partly related to an economic slowdown, in addition to policies put in place by the central government in Beijing. Coal is one of the dirtiest forms of energy, pumping huge amounts of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Burning less coal has the benefit of lowering carbon emissions. In India, plans for more coal-fired power plants may be canceled since the country is making headway at dramatically expanding its solar power capacity. “Five years ago, the idea of either China or India stopping — or even slowing — coal use was considered an insurmountable hurdle, as coal-fired power plants were thought by many to be necessary to satisfy the energy demands of these countries,” said Bill Hare of Climate Analytics, in a statement. “Recent observations show they are now on the way toward overcoming this challenge.” While the U.S. remains undecided on whether it will remain a part of the Paris Agreement, the global energy market is still moving quickly ahead, favoring renewable energy to such an extent that in more areas it is cost competitive with coal and other fossil fuel sources. This has played a role in slowing and even reversing coal's expansion in China and India. Trump’s #climate policies would see US CAT rating downgraded from “medium” to “insufficient” - briefing https://t.co/p2NzBmhi82 #unfccc #1o5 pic.twitter.com/nzcMUexGox The results of the Climate Action Tracker's report are bolstered by findings from a Center for American Progress analysis of China's coal consumption. The report makes clear that the argument that China's emissions would outweigh any progress made in the U.S. is, at best, outdated, and more accurately a zombie argument.  As David Roberts writes at Vox, China is taking on coal head on by shutting down older, more heavily polluting plants in favor of newer, more efficient facilities and renewables. It is also planning for a non-coal future based on renewables.  "In short, while the US dithers along in a cosmically stupid dispute over whether science is real, China is tackling climate change with all guns blazing. The US, not China, is the laggard in this relationship," Roberts wrote. It's unclear if anyone will be able to successfully convince Trump and his team that China is beating the U.S. on transitioning to a cleaner, more efficient future early enough for the administration to decide to remain part of the Paris Agreement. It's more likely that for now, at least, the mantle of climate change leadership has been passed to Asia.  WATCH: This might be the cutest and tiniest smartphone ever


News Article | September 15, 2016
Site: news.yahoo.com

OSLO (Reuters) - The last gasoline-powered car will have to be sold by about 2035 to put the world on track to limit global warming to the most stringent goal set by world leaders last year, a study said on Thursday. The report, by a Climate Action Tracker (CAT) backed by three European research groups, said a drastic shift was needed towards clean electric cars and fuel efficiency since transport emits about 14 percent of world greenhouse gas emissions. Last December, world leaders at a Paris summit set a goal of limiting a rise in temperatures to "well below" 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial times while "pursuing efforts" for a much tougher 1.5 C (2.7F) ceiling. "We calculate that the last gasoline/diesel car will have to be sold by roughly 2035," the CAT report said, to make the car fleet consistent with staying below 1.5C. It assumes the last fossil-fuel vehicles would be on the roads until 2050. The CAT is one of the main groups that monitors government actions to restrict global warming and includes researchers who are authors on U.N. climate reports. "It's striking that it's so early - it means a huge change in the whole automobile industry," Niklas Höhne, of the NewClimate Institute, told Reuters. The other think-tanks behind the report were Ecofys and Climate Analytics. The phase-out is earlier than set by most car makers. Toyota, for instance, has a "zero carbon dioxide emissions challenge" for new vehicles under which it aims to cut emissions from its vehicles by 90 percent by 2050, from 2010 levels. Many scientists reckon that the 1.5C goal, seen by many developing nations as a dangerous threshold for droughts, floods and rising sea levels, has already slipped out of reach and that the 2C limit is growing close. They believe temperatures will almost inevitably overshoot 1.5C, and that new technologies will be needed to turn down the global thermostat later this century. This year is set to be the warmest on record, with temperatures around 1C (1.8F) above pre-industrial times. The CAT report focused most on the promise of electric vehicles, developed by manufacturers from General Motors to Tesla. Other options are cars run on biofuels or hydrogen. The study said a greener transport sector would require a parallel shift to clean power generation, to avoid charging electric cars on power based on fossil fuels. "Electric vehicles are still more expensive to purchase than other cars, and policy projections still only see a share of around five percent of electric vehicles in the total European Union, China and U.S. fleets by 2030," the report said.


HOUSTON, Dec. 20, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Synthesis Energy Systems, Inc. (SES) (NASDAQ:SYMX), the global leader in low cost, high performance clean energy gasification technology, today announced that Chris Raczkowski, an accomplished leader and engineer whose career focus on clean energy technologies includes 17 years of professional experience and living in China and Southeast Asia, has joined the team as President – Asia. Raczkowski will report to SES’s President and CEO, DeLome Fair. Raczkowski’s priority focus will be to expand SES’s business presence and technology adoption in Asia. His 25-year career includes energy project development in China, Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia. He has been responsible for managing project identification, contracting, construction and operations, as well as technology development. Raczkowski has a core understanding of SES Gasification Technology (SGT), having served as Vice President Engineering for SES during the development and construction of the SES Gasification Technology (SGT) demonstration plant in Shandong Province, China. “I am excited to have Chris onboard so that we have added leadership and increased bandwidth to match the global opportunity that our technology affords the developing economies of the world. We believe we have a strong runway in China and we are fielding ever-increasing inquiries from India and numerous other countries in the region,” said DeLome Fair. “Chris will provide additional leadership in China to more quickly drive to completion our ongoing activities there, including our multi-project platform in Shandong anchored by our hydrogen projects in Dongying, and the new tar to diesel project in ZaoZhuang City. Chris’s ability to provide leadership beyond China and into the broader region of Asia is well timed for us to execute on the globalization of our technology and our planned equity investment projects to answer the global demand for an economic and sustainable clean energy solution.” Before joining SES, Chris served as CEO of Azure International, a Beijing-based research, engineering and investment firm focused on sustainable energy solutions, which he co-founded in 2003 and sold to Ecofys, a Dutch company, in 2008. He led the acquisition of new technology partners, and strategically shifted the corporate focus from power generation, such as wind and bioenergy, to energy storage and industrial/building energy efficiency. He also co-led successful development of the Azure Cleantech Energy Fund, a small US-based venture investment fund focused on early stage clean energy firms where China activities are a core to the company’s development strategy. Raczkowski’s career also includes serving as China/SE Asia Managing Director for Rhodia Energy, 2009-2011, where he led a team of over 30 for bioenergy/biogas project development, with three projects realized in China, Vietnam and Malaysia. His first career position in Asia-Pacific was as Asia Operations Manager with Perkin Elmer OptoElectronics, 1999-2001, where Raczkowski’s responsibilities included planning and managing the full financial, sourcing and manufacturing operations of two product lines in Shenzhen, China, and technology transfer project planning, execution, as well as staffing of four new manufacturing operations in China, Singapore and Indonesia. “SES’s gasification technology’s feedstock flexibility is without equal. Its unique ability to transform Asia’s abundant low-cost, low-grade coal and coal waste into energy products in growing demand makes it the optimum responsible coal solution. That SGT can also use renewable biomass and MSW as interchangeable or blended feedstocks with coal on one SGT system makes SGT today’s and tomorrow’s clean energy solution,” said Raczkowski. “I am excited to be rejoining my colleagues at SES to accelerate adoption of this proven superior cost-effective and efficient technology throughout this region of the world where natural gas is expensive and/or unavailable.” Raczkowski received his Bachelor of Science in Materials Engineering and his Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering and Management at Harvey Mudd College, and a Master of Business Administration from NIMBAS Graduate School of Management, based in the Netherlands. Synthesis Energy Systems (SES) is a Houston-based technology company focused on bringing clean high-value energy to developing countries from low-cost and low-grade coal, biomass and municipal solid waste through its proprietary gasification technology based upon U-Gas®, licensed from the Gas Technology Institute. The SES Gasification Technology (SGT) can produce clean, low-cost syngas for power generation, industrial fuels, chemicals, fertilizers, and transportation fuels, replacing expensive natural gas based energy. SGT can also produce high-purity hydrogen for cleaner transportation fuels. SGT enables Growth With Blue Skies, and greater fuel flexibility for both large-scale and efficient small- to medium-scale operations close to fuel sources. Fuel sources include low-rank, low-cost high ash, high moisture coals, which are significantly cheaper than higher grade coals, many coal waste products, biomass, and municipal solid waste feedstocks. For more information, please visit: www.synthesisenergy.com. Forward-Looking Statements This press release includes "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. All statements other than statements of historical fact are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks, trends and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected. Among those risks, trends and uncertainties are the ability of our project with Yima to produce earnings and pay dividends; our ability to develop and expand business of the TSEC joint venture in the joint venture territory; our ability to successfully partner our technology business; our ability to develop our power business unit and marketing arrangement with GE and our other business verticals, including DRI steel, through our marketing arrangement with Midrex Technologies, and renewables; our ability to successfully develop the SES licensing business; the ability of the ZZ Joint Venture to retire existing facilities and equipment and build another SGT facility; the ability of Batchfire management to successfully grow and develop Callide operations; the economic conditions of countries where we are operating; events or circumstances which result in an impairment of our assets; our ability to reduce operating costs; our ability to make distributions and repatriate earnings from our Chinese operations; our ability to successfully commercialize our technology at a larger scale and higher pressures; commodity prices, including in particular natural gas, crude oil, methanol and power, the availability and terms of financing; our ability to obtain the necessary approvals and permits for future projects, our ability to raise additional capital, if any, our ability to estimate the sufficiency of existing capital resources; the sufficiency of internal controls and procedures; and our results of operations in countries outside of the U.S., where we are continuing to pursue and develop projects. Although SES believes that in making such forward-looking statements our expectations are based upon reasonable assumptions, such statements may be influenced by factors that could cause actual outcomes and results to be materially different from those projected by us. SES cannot assure you that the assumptions upon which these statements are based will prove to have been correct.


News Article | April 2, 2016
Site: www.topix.com

On March 11, 2016, a consortium made up of Ecofys, the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis , and E4tech announced that the final report on the Land Use Change study is now available online. The study was commissioned and funded by the European Commission and was focused on using the GLOBIOM model to determine ILUC associated with the ten percent renewable energy use target for transportation mandated by the European Union's 2020 goals. Start the conversation, or Read more at JD Supra.


News Article | November 15, 2016
Site: globenewswire.com

Vaisala Releases New Ecofys Verification Studies of Triton Remote Sensor Studies by leading wind energy consultant demonstrate excellent consistency and performance Vaisala, a global leader in environmental and industrial measurement, has released two independent verification studies conducted by Ecofys, an international consultancy based in Europe recently acquired by Navigant. The studies used two production Triton units deployed from March 5 - May 29, 2015 and June 6 - Sept 10, 2015, respectively, at the Lelystad test site. The verification studies include an assessment of the sensitivity of the Triton remote sensor to environmental factors, demonstrating that wind speed measurements taken by the unit are unaffected by changing environmental parameters. Rather than using the minimum amount of data required, the studies were conducted for a time period of several months, ensuring a more robust, representative dataset with which to assess measurement uncertainty. The wind energy industry's ability to predict and assess a project's annual energy output is a crucial factor in securing and maintaining investor confidence in wind projects. Triton, a ground-based SoDAR remote sensing system, is used to measure wind at and above the hub height of today's taller wind turbines. By supplementing or replacing measurements from met towers in resource assessment and operational settings, Triton adds value and provides a cost-effective solution to wind developers and operators. The Ecofys studies are part of Vaisala's commitment to quality and program of continual improvement to support wind power plant developers and system operators in applications ranging from early stage prospecting to repowering legacy power plants. Click here for more information about the Triton verification studies conducted by Ecofys. Triton is the industry's leading remote sensing system with over 17 million hours of wind data collected in over 80 countries since 2008. Vaisala is an expert in renewable energy resource measurement, project assessment, energy forecasting, and asset management. For more information on the range of services offered by Vaisala to the renewable energy sector, please visit www.vaisala.com/energy. For further information, please contact: Francesca Davidson Energy Communications Expert, Vaisala Tel +1 206 708 8544 francesca.davidson[at]vaisala.com Vaisala Energy Weather is the largest variable impacting electricity generation, transmission, and demand and it provides the fuel for renewable energy projects. Energy customers work with Vaisala to support efficient, reliable, and profitable electrical energy systems around the globe with a wide range of measurement, assessment, forecasting, and asset management products and services. Our real-time and historical lightning information ensures continuous energy generation, improved safety, and reduced costs in both energy production and transmission. Renewable energy developers and operators use Vaisala equipment and services to support the entire project lifecycle, from greenfield prospecting and due diligence to operational forecasting and plant optimization. www.vaisala.com/energy  twitter.com/VaisalaEnergy linkedin.com/company/vaisala-energy About Vaisala Vaisala is a global leader in environmental and industrial measurement. Building on 80 years of experience, Vaisala contributes to a better quality of life by providing a comprehensive range of innovative observation and measurement products and services for chosen weather-related and industrial markets. Headquartered in Finland, Vaisala employs approximately 1600 professionals worldwide and is listed on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki stock exchange. www.vaisala.com www.twitter.com/VaisalaGroup


News Article | March 14, 2016
Site: www.greentechmedia.com

European Union renewable energy targets may have increased greenhouse gas emissions, because the dirtiest biofuels produce three times the emissions of diesel oil, according to the most complete EU analysis yet carried out. Biodiesel made from palm oil emits more than three times as much and soybean oil around twice as much, when the crops’ effects on land use are considered, the research by the Ecofys consultancy for the European Commission found. Europe’s aim of sourcing 10% of its transport fuel to “renewables” by 2020 -- mostly biodiesel -- will foster crop cultivation on 6.7M hectares of forests and grasslands, the paper says. When the loss of trees is factored in, such "first-generation biofuels" would generate around nearly 1B tonnes of CO2 equivalent. Business Insider: Tesla's Model 3 Could Totally Fail -- and Here's Why It Wouldn't Matter Tesla has created three vehicles in its short history -- the Roadster, the Model S, and the Model X. But it's assumed that none will be more important than the mass-market Model 3, being revealed this month and scheduled to hit the streets in 2017. It has to succeed, right? Well, no. It could be a catastrophe. But that wouldn't necessarily spell the end for Tesla. Republican front-runner Donald Trump on Saturday called the Environmental Protection Agency on Saturday a "complete disaster" that is unfairly targeting Ohio's coal and steel industries. Trump was speaking from a rally in Dayton, Ohio, ahead of a presidential primary election on Tuesday. "They are a complete disaster; we are going to change things around," Trump said. Engineers in Brazil have developed a system of floating solar panels for a part of the Amazon that was flooded and destroyed by a hydroelectric dam project in the 1980s. The solar panels are an attempt to transform the artificial lake into a sustainable project after the Balbina dam flooded the region in 1989, in what has been considered an “environmental crime.” The construction of the dam inundated some 2,400 square kilometers of Amazon rainforest at a high cost, which in the end had very little electricity generation capacity. Reuters: China's Electric Car Sales to Double in 2016, Says Minister China's production and sale of electric cars will more than double this year, the industry minister said on Sunday. More than 300,000 electric cars were sold in China last year, Miao Wei, the head of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology told reporters on the sidelines of the annual meeting of parliament on Sunday. The reliability, mileage and lifespan of electric batteries needs improvement, and China needs to speed up the installation of electric-car charging stations, Miao said.


News Article | February 16, 2017
Site: www.businesswire.com

CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Navigant (NYSE: NCI) today announced financial results for the fourth quarter and the full year ended December 31, 2016. The Company also introduced its business and financial outlook for 2017. “Navigant delivered outstanding results in 2016, far exceeding our historical trends in top and bottom line growth, our original estimates for the year and general economic growth,” commented Julie Howard, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Seamless execution on our strategic plans and the clear alignment of our professionals’ expertise to the transformational issues impacting our clients translated into strong business performance. We are very pleased to have delivered significant value to our shareholders as a result. Looking ahead, I view 2017 with measured optimism. We plan to remain nimble in aligning our resources and capabilities to address the potential changes that may occur for our clients as the regulatory environment evolves.” Navigant reported fourth quarter 2016 RBR of $239.7 million, a 13% increase (9% organic growth), compared to $212.0 million for fourth quarter 2015. Total revenues increased 14% to $266.1 million for fourth quarter 2016 compared to $232.6 million for fourth quarter 2015. Net income for fourth quarter 2016 was $13.5 million, or $0.28 per share, compared to $13.2 million, or $0.27 per share, in the prior year fourth quarter. Adjusted EPS was $0.30 for fourth quarter 2016, up 7% compared to fourth quarter 2015. Fourth quarter 2016 adjusted EBITDA was $34.8 million, a 13% increase, compared to $30.9 million for the same period in 2015. Adjusted EBITDA margin (adjusted EBITDA as a percent of RBR) for fourth quarter 2016 was 14.5%, flat compared to fourth quarter 2015. RBR for full year 2016 increased 13% (9% organic growth) on a year-over-year basis to $938.7 million compared to $833.8 million for full year 2015. Total revenues for full year 2016 increased 13% on a year-over-year basis to $1.03 billion compared to $919.5 million for full year 2015. Net income for full year 2016 was $58.1 million, or $1.19 per share, compared to $60.3 million, or $1.23 per share, in 2015. Adjusted EPS was $1.27 for full year 2016, up 19% compared to full year 2015. Full year 2016 adjusted EBITDA was $142.3 million, an 18% increase, compared to $120.9 million for full year 2015. Adjusted EBITDA margin for full year 2016 increased to 15.2% compared to 14.5% for full year 2015. “We made significant progress on our growth strategy while strengthening our financial position during 2016,” said Stephen Lieberman, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. “We completed strategic acquisitions and made investments to complement and enhance our core businesses, while also remaining intensely focused on strong capital management. Going forward, our emphasis will be on operating more efficiently to advance our growth agenda and to meet the financial targets we set forth today.” Healthcare segment RBR increased 21% for fourth quarter 2016 and 23% for full year 2016 compared to the respective periods in 2015, with more than half of that growth organic. Strength in both fourth quarter 2016 and full year 2016 was driven by continued demand for large, strategy-led transformation projects and revenue cycle consulting engagements. Segment operating profit was up 27% in both fourth quarter 2016 and full year 2016, compared to the respective periods of 2015. Energy segment RBR increased 14% for fourth quarter 2016 on a year-over-year basis, primarily driven by contributions from the Ecofys acquisition announced in November 2016. Full year 2016 RBR was up 9% from full year 2015, with more than half of that growth organic, reflecting an increase in demand for strategy and operations projects for utilities and energy efficiency evaluation and standards engagements driven largely by increased penetration of key client accounts. Segment operating profit was up 11% in fourth quarter 2016 and up 4% in full year 2016, compared to the respective periods in 2015. The Financial Services Advisory and Compliance segment RBR for fourth quarter 2016 increased 21% compared to the prior year quarter and increased 22% for full year 2016 compared to full year 2015, all on an organic basis. Strength was driven primarily by continued demand for financial crimes consulting expertise and an increase in compliance and controls engagements for major financial institutions, as compared to the prior year periods. Segment operating profit was up 18% in fourth quarter 2016 and up 29% in full year 2016, compared to the respective periods of 2015, driven by RBR growth, better pricing and greater use of lower cost, flexible resources. The Disputes, Forensics & Legal Technology segment RBR increased 2% for fourth quarter 2016 and 1% for full year 2016 compared to the respective periods in 2015, all on an organic basis. Growth in both fourth quarter 2016 and full year 2016 was primarily driven by the continued strong demand for our global expertise in complex industrial, infrastructure and commercial project matters and an increase in performance-based fees associated with mass tort claims work. Segment operating profit was up 4% in fourth quarter 2016 and up 6% in full year 2016 compared to the respective periods of 2015. Net cash provided by operating activities for fourth quarter 2016 was $54.4 million compared to $49.0 million for fourth quarter 2015, and was $110.0 for full year 2016 compared to $83.1 million for full year 2015, as a result of improved earnings. Free cash flow increased to $7.9 million for fourth quarter 2016 compared to $7.5 million for the same period in 2015, primarily driven by a decrease in deferred acquisition payments, partially offset by increased capital expenditures. Full year 2016 free cash flow was $78.8 million compared to $49.0 million for full year 2015, reflecting improved operating performance, decreased capital expenditures and a decrease in deferred acquisition payments. Days Sales Outstanding was 81 days as of December 31, 2016, up five days compared to December 31, 2015. Bank debt was $135.0 million at December 31, 2016, compared to $173.7 million at December 31, 2015 and $161.2 million at September 30, 2016. Leverage (bank debt divided by trailing twelve month adjusted EBITDA) was 0.95 at December 31, 2016, compared to 1.44 at December 31, 2015 and 1.17 at September 30, 2016. Navigant repurchased 291,495 shares of common stock during fourth quarter 2016 at an aggregate cost of $6.3 million and an average cost of $21.46 per share. For full year 2016, the Company repurchased approximately 1.4 million shares of common stock at an aggregate cost of $25.1 million and an average cost of $17.45 per share. As of December 31, 2016, approximately $63.0 million remained available under the Company’s share repurchase authorization. Navigant is introducing its 2017 outlook. Full year 2017 RBR is expected to range between $975 million and $1.010 billion while 2017 total revenues are estimated to be between $1.075 billion and $1.115 billion. Adjusted EBITDA for the full year 2017 is expected to range between $145 and $156 million and adjusted EPS for the full year 2017 is estimated to be between $1.29 and $1.36. This press release includes certain non-GAAP financial measures as defined by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Reconciliations of these non-GAAP financial measures to the most directly comparable financial measure calculated and presented in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) are included in the financial schedules attached to this press release. This information should be considered as supplemental in nature and not as a substitute for, or superior to, any measure of performance prepared in accordance with GAAP. No reconciliation of Navigant’s 2017 adjusted EBITDA guidance and 2017 adjusted EPS guidance, both of which exclude the impact and tax-effected impact of severance expense and other operating costs (benefit), respectively, is included in the financial schedules attached to this press release. Navigant is not able to accurately forecast the excluded items at the level of precision that would be required to be included in the most directly comparable GAAP financial measure without unreasonable efforts. Navigant will host a conference call to discuss the Company’s fourth quarter and full year 2016 results at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time (9:00 a.m. Central Time) on Thursday, February 16, 2017. The conference call may be accessed via the Navigant website (investors.navigant.com) or by dialing 888.455.9733 (630.395.0358 for international callers) and referencing pass code “NCI.” An archived version of the webcast will also be available via the Navigant website. A report of financial and related supplemental information is also available via the Navigant website. Navigant Consulting, Inc. (NYSE: NCI) is a specialized, global professional services firm that helps clients take control of their future. Navigant’s professionals apply deep industry knowledge, substantive technical expertise, and an enterprising approach to help clients build, manage and/or protect their business interests. With a focus on industries and clients facing transformational change and significant regulatory or legal pressures, the Firm primarily serves clients in the healthcare, energy and financial services markets. Across a range of advisory, consulting, outsourcing, and technology/analytics services, Navigant’s practitioners bring sharp insight that pinpoints opportunities and delivers powerful results. More information about Navigant can be found at navigant.com. Statements included in this press release which are not historical in nature are forward-looking statements as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements may generally be identified by words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” ”may,” “could,” “intend,” “estimate,” “expect,” “plan,” “outlook” and similar expressions. These statements are based upon management’s current expectations and speak only as of the date of this press release. The Company cautions readers that there may be events in the future that the Company is not able to accurately predict or control and the information contained in the forward-looking statements is inherently uncertain and subject to a number of risks that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in or implied by the forward-looking statements including, without limitation: the execution of the Company’s long-term growth objectives and margin improvement initiatives; risks inherent in international operations, including foreign currency fluctuations; ability to make acquisitions and divestitures; pace, timing and integration of acquisitions and separation of divestitures; operational risks associated with new or expanded service areas, including business process management services; impairments; changes in accounting standards or tax rates, laws or regulations; management of professional staff, including dependence on key personnel, recruiting, retention, attrition and the ability to successfully integrate new consultants into the Company’s practices; utilization rates; conflicts of interest; potential loss of clients or large engagements and the Company’s ability to attract new business; brand equity; competition; accurate pricing of engagements, particularly fixed fee and multi-year engagements; clients’ financial condition and their ability to make payments to the Company; risks inherent with litigation; higher risk client assignments; government contracting; professional liability; information security; the adequacy of our business, financial and information systems and technology; maintenance of effective internal controls; potential legislative and regulatory changes; continued and sufficient access to capital; compliance with covenants in our credit agreement; interest rate risk; and market and general economic and political conditions. Further information on these and other potential factors that could affect the Company’s financial results are included under the “Risk Factors” section of the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2015, and elsewhere in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which are available on the SEC’s website or at investors.navigant.com. The Company cannot guarantee any future results, levels of activity, performance or achievement and undertakes no obligation to update any of its forward-looking statements.


CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Navigant (NYSE : NCI) a annoncé aujourd'hui avoir acquis Ecofys, une société de conseil internationale basée en Europe qui bénéficie d'une position de leader dans les domaines de l'énergie et de la durabilité. L'ajout des 150 professionnels du conseil d'Ecofys va améliorer les capacités et les offres de solutions de Navigant, permettant à la société de bénéficier d'une expertise supplémentaire dans les domaines de la politique énergétique, des stratégies et politiques

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