As every investor knows, the easiest way to make money is to ride long term trends. Every indication suggests that the issue of global warming is a long way from going away; on the contrary it is only beginning to gain traction on the agendas of governments around the world.
The following are 5 ways that you can make money from global warming (and help human kind and the planet at the same time).
1.) Invest in Uranium
The most likely, albeit short term, solution to the over use of fossil fuels, is a surprising option: nuclear energy.
Aggressive new nuclear plant construction programs have begun, particularly in East Asian countries, Russia, and India. The United States itself is on the verge of resuming construction of new nuclear power plants, a process that has been dormant for more than 25 years. This is the beginning of the third era, the renaissance of nuclear energy.
In 2001, the U.S. government issued … a course to expand the use of nuclear energy in the near term by making more efficient the processes of obtaining extensions of licenses to operate existing nuclear plants and of obtaining licenses to build new nuclear facilities. The NEP further sought to encourage nuclear energy use through the development, demonstration, and deployment of next-generation nuclear power technologies. Importantly, it aimed at achieving this goal through research and development of advanced fuel cycles that might prove to be cleaner, more efficient, less waste intensive, and more proliferation resistant than a single-use nuclear fuel, which requires geologic disposal of the used fuel.
SourceAs a result of nuclear being more and more the “go to” alternative to fossil fuels the price of Uranium has increased dramatically and continues to rise at an incredible rate.
The price of uranium was approximately $10.75 per pound in early 2003. By mid 2006, the price had risen to approximately $45.00 per pound. In early 2007 the price approached $100.00 per pound.
Many uranium companies are positioned for continued exceptional growth.
2.) Create a Website
Here’s a couple ideas to get you started:
- How about a social bookmarking type site (like http://del.icio.us/ ) that is specifically for tips on how to combat global warming, or if you’re a bit edgier, publicly reporting companies (to put public pressure on them) that are doing really bad things or just reporting general abuses of the environment.
- An e-commerce site themed around energy efficient products
- A site promoting eco alternative tips, possibly user contributed with education products, to promote the cause.
3.) Stop Paying an Ego Tax on Your Car
Buy a More Efficient Car (and invest the savings)
Most cars have a large premium on ego value. Most city dwellers will never need the features that their SUVs provide. The real reason they think they need an big heavy powerful car, is that it makes them feel more secure. In other words the benefits are more directed towards the ego than reality.
As global warming becomes more and more prominent and dangerous, the price of fossil fuels is only going to rise and the tax on ego based transportation will continue to increase.
Paying for ego benefits can be expensive, to your wallet and to the planet. The goods news is that ego costs are easy to cut, and even better is the self-esteem dividend that you’ll receive from not needing to pander to your own ego gone wild.
4.) Trade in Eco Tax currency
Here’s how it works. If you do something that contributes positively to the efforts to reduce greenhouse gases, like installing a wind farm and selling the electricity to your power company, you earn power credits.
Then companies that create an excess of greenhouse gases can purchase credits to allow them to go over the emissions standard and most of all ease their conscience and improve their public relations.
The result is that the polluters are paying the eco-conscious to do the work of reducing greenhouse gases for them.
And speaking of easing your guilt, here comes TerraPass. Their slogan: “Clean up after your car, fight global warming”. As an SUV [or any other gas-guzzler car] owner you have the opportunity to purchase a TerraPass for about $80, display it proudly on your windshield and drive guilt free in the summer smog and brown-outs.
Here’s how it would work: Company X, which uses the latest technology to burn coal for electricity, receives a permit that lets it emit 1,000 tons of greenhouse gases a year. But the company, which now emits 1,500 tons of pollutants a year, believes it will cost too much to switch to cleaner-burning natural gas. Meanwhile, Company Y also gets a permit to emit 1,000 tons of greenhouse gases a year. But it has an antiquated coal-fired system that it can economically retrofit to be more efficient. As a result, it expects its plants to reduce emissions to 500 tons. So it sells its unused 500 tons to Company X. Averaged together, both companies’ emissions fall within the emissions cap.
5.) Invest in Green Funds
“Green funds” are mutual funds that invest in environmentally friendly companies, such as those involved in clean energy (wind, solar, biomass); or in progressive companies that use environmental technology to reduce greenhouse gases in industries such as oil, gas, coal and mining.
According to Jantzi, U.S. mutual funds with green leanings total $2-trillion and account for about 10 per cent of total investments in that country.
Have a contingency plan. If we can’t get our act together and things really go to hell with global warming and climate chance, and you’re one of the ones lucky enough to survive, a couple gold bars or a few hundred ounces of silver, could make you royalty in whatever passes for the world that remains.
I believe that we can not only save the planet from global warming and the damage of fossil fuel abuse, but we can also make money doing it. In fact, if it doesn’t somehow turn into an activity that is predominantly sponsored by powerful capitalists, who have largely their own interests at heart, then we have a much lower chance of surviving the last 100 years of our arrogant abuse of our planet.
Silver Investing – On a Roll
Silver is often overlooked as an investment.
I ran across this article on Gold-Eagle.com about the price of silver. The price has been on run, similar to gold in the last few years.
In my view, Silver’s demand will continue to outstrip supply because of its unique properties, not the least of which is its amazing reflectivity and electrical conductivity capabilities. It is silver that is used in the manufacture of “room temperature superconductors” that will emerge as the next generation of electrical cable because copper cable – whilst efficient – also results in a loss of up to 33% of all energy that is pumped into it at the power generation source…
But silver has been the subject of price manipulation – by a cartel that is probably operating illegally in the strict sense of the term. These “walnut and pea” price manipulators have been using confetti trails of derivatives for years to prevent the price from rising – even as government stockpiles world-wide have been dwindling to virtually zero. [Quoted from here]
Charts for the price of silver [scroll to the bottom the interesting ones are the 5 and 10 year charts]. The following is not exactly current but the price has risen sharply since the time it was made [currently ~$7 oz.]
As this is written in mid to late February 2003, if you take care to notice, there are widespread shortages in all silver categories from coins to large bars at dealers all over the U.S. Many categories are intermittently sold out; a run on silver is taking place. Almost none of this metal will return to the marketplace until silver hits at least $10. [Quoted from here]
In 1997 Warren Buffet purchased a warehouse full of silver bullion [It is rumored that he is buying again]. Here’s the reason he gave at the time:
We have no inside information about great new uses for silver or anything of the sort. You can see from looking at the numbers that aggregate demand, primarily from investor and fundamental type uses, is close to 800 million-plus ounces a year, and there are 500 million or so ounces of silver being produced annually. [Quoted from here]
Silver investing is definitely an interesting topic: with fascinating players, conspiracy theories, price manipulation and the standard history and allure of precious metals.