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Electric truck maker Nikola’s shares fall as SEC, DOJ reportedly examine short seller’s fraud claims

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Trevor Milton CEO of Nikola

Massimo Pinca | Reuters

Shares of electric truck maker Nikola tumbled Tuesday amid reports the Securities and Exchange Commission and Department of Justice are inquiring into short seller claims that the company misled investors.

Bloomberg news Monday night first reported that the SEC was looking into whether Nikola may have violated securities laws. The Financial Times followed Tuesday afternoon, reporting that the DOJ has called people to discuss the company and the report’s allegations in recent days.

There’s no guarantee that either agency will launch a full investigation, but the reports were enough to send Nikola shares on Tuesday down 8.3% to $32.83. The stock continued to fall during extended-hours trading. 

Short seller Hindenburg accused Nikola founder Trevor Milton of making false statements about its technology in order to grow the company and partner with auto companies.

The report, titled “Nikola: How to Parlay An Ocean of Lies Into a Partnership With the Largest Auto OEM in America,” was released two days after the company announced a deal with General Motors that sent both companies’ shares soaring. It characterized Nikola as an “intricate fraud built on dozens of lies” by Milton.

The SEC declined to comment Tuesday morning. Nikola, in a statement Monday, said it “proactively contacted and briefed” the agency last week regarding the report. Nikola said it “welcomes the SEC’s involvement in this matter.”

Nikola and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, which is reportedly leading the DOJ inquiries, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The report was released two days after General Motors said it is taking an 11% stake in Nikola. GM said it planned to produce Nikola’s electric pickup truck, the Badger, by the end of 2022. GM CEO Mary Barra on Monday said the automaker conducted “appropriate diligence” on the company.

Hindenburg doubled down on its claims Tuesday after Nikola’s response Monday. The short seller said Nikola failed to address a majority of questions raised by the report, which characterized Nikola’s response as having “holes big enough to roll a truck through.”

Nikola has repeatedly denied and disputed the claims, however the company on Monday confirmed one of Hindenburg’s largest claims — that it staged a video showing a truck that appeared to be functional but wasn’t.

Nikola also did not respond to a request for comment on Hindenburg’s most recent remarks.

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/09/15/nikolas-shares-fall-as-sec-reportedly-examines-short-sellers-fraud-claims.html

CNBC

Department of Energy chief says ‘our hair should be on fire’ after summer of widespread climate disasters

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U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm speaks about the Colonial Pipeline cyberattack shut down during a press briefing at the White House in Washington, May 11, 2021.

Kevin Lamarque | Reuters

Climate change became a personal event for a third of Americans this summer, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy Jennifer Granholm said on Wednesday.

“Our hair should be on fire,” Granholm said in an event for Climate Week NYC. “We have lived through a summer — we all have seen it — where nearly one in three Americans have lived through, now, a climate disaster.”

A spokesperson for the Department of Energy said Granholm was referring to a Washington Post analysis, published earlier this month, of federal disaster declarations that showed almost a third of Americans live in a county that was affected by a weather disaster during a three month period. That includes the heat dome in the Northwest, flash floods, drought and wildfires.

“There’s no way we can hit the snooze button on climate action. This is not our alarm clock going off. This is a fire alarm code red for humanity, as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said,” Granholm said.

Urgent efforts to decarbonize global industries will be expensive and will ultimately create jobs, Granholm underscored on Wednesday.

“By the end of this decade, the global market for clean energy and carbon reduction technologies is going to reach $23 trillion — at a minimum,” Granholm said. “And so we want to corner that market by building clean energy supply chains and solutions here, sourced in America with American labor.”

Those jobs would be located across the U.S. and would vary in required skillset, she said. The Department of Energy is also working to ensure those jobs would be represented by unions, Granholm said.

More from CNBC Climate:

“The president really feels this very deeply that labor built his country, they built the middle class and what we’ve come to learn over the last several decades is that when the labor community is weakened, inequality grows. That’s it,” Granholm said.

Granholm said the U.S. could see clean energy transition jobs opening up for engineers, maintenance workers, pipe fitters, plasterers, painters, plumbers, carpenters, bricklayers, boilermakers, autoworkers, ironworkers, linemen and journeymen.

Fossil fuel energy workers will have the opportunity to transition into clean energy jobs, too, she said.

“We believe that clean energy jobs that offer the chance to join a union are going to address that inequality issue,” Granholm said. “It is going to lift millions of families into the middle class.”

And work has to happen fast, she said.

“We had our biggest year last year with respect to installed gigawatts of wind and solar, but we’ve got to double, triple, quadruple that amount,” Granholm said. “So we can not rest, it is all about deployment and getting that clean energy on the grid.”

PlatoAi. Web3 Reimagined. Data Intelligence Amplified.
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Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/09/22/department-of-energy-chief-says-hair-should-be-on-fire-after-summer-of-climate-disasters.html

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CNBC

Department of Energy chief says ‘our hair should be on fire’ after summer of widespread climate disasters

Published

on

U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm speaks about the Colonial Pipeline cyberattack shut down during a press briefing at the White House in Washington, May 11, 2021.

Kevin Lamarque | Reuters

Climate change became a personal event for a third of Americans this summer, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy Jennifer Granholm said on Wednesday.

“Our hair should be on fire,” Granholm said in an event for Climate Week NYC. “We have lived through a summer — we all have seen it — where nearly one in three Americans have lived through, now, a climate disaster.”

A spokesperson for the Department of Energy said Granholm was referring to a Washington Post analysis, published earlier this month, of federal disaster declarations that showed almost a third of Americans live in a county that was affected by a weather disaster during a three month period. That includes the heat dome in the Northwest, flash floods, drought and wildfires.

“There’s no way we can hit the snooze button on climate action. This is not our alarm clock going off. This is a fire alarm code red for humanity, as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said,” Granholm said.

Urgent efforts to decarbonize global industries will be expensive and will ultimately create jobs, Granholm underscored on Wednesday.

“By the end of this decade, the global market for clean energy and carbon reduction technologies is going to reach $23 trillion — at a minimum,” Granholm said. “And so we want to corner that market by building clean energy supply chains and solutions here, sourced in America with American labor.”

Those jobs would be located across the U.S. and would vary in required skillset, she said. The Department of Energy is also working to ensure those jobs would be represented by unions, Granholm said.

More from CNBC Climate:

“The president really feels this very deeply that labor built his country, they built the middle class and what we’ve come to learn over the last several decades is that when the labor community is weakened, inequality grows. That’s it,” Granholm said.

Granholm said the U.S. could see clean energy transition jobs opening up for engineers, maintenance workers, pipe fitters, plasterers, painters, plumbers, carpenters, bricklayers, boilermakers, autoworkers, ironworkers, linemen and journeymen.

Fossil fuel energy workers will have the opportunity to transition into clean energy jobs, too, she said.

“We believe that clean energy jobs that offer the chance to join a union are going to address that inequality issue,” Granholm said. “It is going to lift millions of families into the middle class.”

And work has to happen fast, she said.

“We had our biggest year last year with respect to installed gigawatts of wind and solar, but we’ve got to double, triple, quadruple that amount,” Granholm said. “So we can not rest, it is all about deployment and getting that clean energy on the grid.”

PlatoAi. Web3 Reimagined. Data Intelligence Amplified.
Click here to access.

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/09/22/department-of-energy-chief-says-hair-should-be-on-fire-after-summer-of-climate-disasters.html

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Solar companies say new tariff proposal would devastate the industry

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choja | E+ | Getty Images

The Solar Energy Industries Association said Wednesday that implementing tariffs on panels and cells from Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand, which account for 80% of the U.S.’ panel imports, would have a “catastrophic impact” on the industry.

In a letter to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, more than 190 U.S. solar companies urged the Department of Commerce not to initiate a trade investigation.

Wednesday’s letter comes after several companies filed an anonymous petition with the Department of Commerce in August alleging that China-based solar cell and module manufacturers are avoiding U.S. tariffs by moving production out of the country. The Department is expected to decide by the end of the month whether to open an investigation.

“The massive duties called for in these petitions, ranging from 50% to as high as 250%, are already having an adverse impact on the U.S. solar industry and, if implemented, would devastate the industry and each of our individual companies,” the letter said.

SEIA estimates that should the proposed tariffs go into effect, it would cost the industry 18 gigawatts of solar deployment by 2023, which is equivalent to all U.S. solar installations prior to 2015. It also represents a sizable chunk of the expected buildout over the next few years. The industry is expected to add 30 GW of solar in 2022 and 33 GW in 2023, according to estimates from energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie.

“We believe the significant uncertainty is a real risk for US utility-scale developers – projects could be pushed out further with increasing disruptions beyond poly [polycrystalline] and freight/logistics,” noted analysts at Bank of America.

The petitioners claim that the bulk of assembly for solar products imported from Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand actually takes place in China, which is why these goods should be subject to tariffs. SEIA disputes this, saying that substantial work is done outside of China.

More from CNBC Climate:

“We cannot emphasize enough how damaging these tariffs would be to our companies and the entire American solar industry,” the letter said.

This comes as the industry faces several headwinds, including supply chain disruptions and higher raw material costs.

In June, U.S. Customs and Border Protection issued a Withhold Release Order on silica-based products from Hoshine Silicon Industry due to forced labor concerns in China’s Xinjiang region.

During the second quarter solar costs rose quarter over quarter and year over year across all market segments for the first time since Wood Mackenzie began tracking price data in 2014. Additionally, some key provisions — including an extension of the Investment Tax Credit — were left out of the infrastructure bill. There’s hope within the industry that the $3.5 trillion spending package will include substantial funding for clean energy projects.

PlatoAi. Web3 Reimagined. Data Intelligence Amplified.
Click here to access.

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/09/22/solar-companies-say-new-tariff-proposal-would-devastate-the-industry.html

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CNBC

Solar companies say new tariff proposal would devastate the industry

Published

on

choja | E+ | Getty Images

The Solar Energy Industries Association said Wednesday that implementing tariffs on panels and cells from Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand, which account for 80% of the U.S.’ panel imports, would have a “catastrophic impact” on the industry.

In a letter to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, more than 190 U.S. solar companies urged the Department of Commerce not to initiate a trade investigation.

Wednesday’s letter comes after several companies filed an anonymous petition with the Department of Commerce in August alleging that China-based solar cell and module manufacturers are avoiding U.S. tariffs by moving production out of the country. The Department is expected to decide by the end of the month whether to open an investigation.

“The massive duties called for in these petitions, ranging from 50% to as high as 250%, are already having an adverse impact on the U.S. solar industry and, if implemented, would devastate the industry and each of our individual companies,” the letter said.

SEIA estimates that should the proposed tariffs go into effect, it would cost the industry 18 gigawatts of solar deployment by 2023, which is equivalent to all U.S. solar installations prior to 2015. It also represents a sizable chunk of the expected buildout over the next few years. The industry is expected to add 30 GW of solar in 2022 and 33 GW in 2023, according to estimates from energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie.

“We believe the significant uncertainty is a real risk for US utility-scale developers – projects could be pushed out further with increasing disruptions beyond poly [polycrystalline] and freight/logistics,” noted analysts at Bank of America.

The petitioners claim that the bulk of assembly for solar products imported from Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand actually takes place in China, which is why these goods should be subject to tariffs. SEIA disputes this, saying that substantial work is done outside of China.

More from CNBC Climate:

“We cannot emphasize enough how damaging these tariffs would be to our companies and the entire American solar industry,” the letter said.

This comes as the industry faces several headwinds, including supply chain disruptions and higher raw material costs.

In June, U.S. Customs and Border Protection issued a Withhold Release Order on silica-based products from Hoshine Silicon Industry due to forced labor concerns in China’s Xinjiang region.

During the second quarter solar costs rose quarter over quarter and year over year across all market segments for the first time since Wood Mackenzie began tracking price data in 2014. Additionally, some key provisions — including an extension of the Investment Tax Credit — were left out of the infrastructure bill. There’s hope within the industry that the $3.5 trillion spending package will include substantial funding for clean energy projects.

PlatoAi. Web3 Reimagined. Data Intelligence Amplified.
Click here to access.

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/09/22/solar-companies-say-new-tariff-proposal-would-devastate-the-industry.html

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