Buffett Says He Will Double Investment in Renewables

U.S. financier Warren Buffett, already one of his country’s largest investors in clean technologies, says he’s prepared to double his stake in renewable energy.

Jun 16, 2014 at 3:52PM

This article was written by Oilprice.com -- the leading provider of energy news in the world. Also check out this recent article:

U.S. financier Warren Buffett, already one of his country's largest investors in clean technologies, says he's prepared to double his stake in renewable energy.

Speaking June 9 in Las Vegas, he noted that his investment company, Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK-B), already had invested about $15 billion in clean-energy enterprises, and added that he has "another $15 billion ready to go, as far as I'm concerned."

Earlier in his career, Buffett tended to invest in high-return businesses, but more recently he has said he likes the renewable energy industry because it's ripe for reinvestment and broader acquisitions. A prime example is an energy holding company in Iowa whose expansion Buffet funded in 2000.

That company, now known as Berkshire Hathaway Energy, runs electric grids in Britain, gas pipelines that cross the United States and electrical utilities in several U.S. states. And it keeps all its earnings, unlike many other energy companies, meaning it has on hand plenty of money – about $30 billion – to invest in the coming years.

"We're going to keep doing that as far as the eye can see," Buffett told the Edison Electric Institute's annual convention. "We'll just keep moving."

There's a growing need for investment in renewable energy, now that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has required utilities to cut carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030 below the 2005 levels.

Nick Akins, the CEO of American Electric Power Co., told Bloomberg News that Buffett's words were "encouraging ... because as an industry we have a strong need for capital." Akins' company works with Berkshire on a project called Electric Transmission Texas, which operates power lines carrying electricity to customers from wind farms in the state.

In his Las Vegas address, Buffett seemed to be speaking casually. But Jeff Matthews, who has written books about Berkshire Hathaway, says no one should mistake the financier's intentions. Evidently, Matthews says, Buffet sees attractive returns on investment in renewables.

"If he says it, he means it," Matthews said.

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Written by Andy Tully at Oilprice.com.

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4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

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David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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