Focus on Climate Change Will Spawn Investment in Energy and Information Technologies, Energy Insights Predicts

FRAMINIGHAM, MA – JANUARY 10, 2007 – Climate change concerns top the list as the key prediction to watch for 2007 in a recent report published by Energy Insights, an IDC Company. The report, entitled Worldwide Energy Industry Top 10 Predictions in 2007 (Doc # EI204793), contends that drivers such as climate-friendly energy policies and increased momentum in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions trading, are fueling investments in no-GHG and low-GHG energy technologies, including more expensive renewable and nuclear generation. Additionally, GHG emissions trading will become more active, with companies investing in information technology to accommodate emissions trading (i.e., energy trading and risk management applications).

"The energy industry is bracing itself for an interesting year in 2007. Amid continuing volatility in energy prices, steadily improving financial health, regulatory focus on climate change, market restructuring, and electric reliability, energy companies must cope with a diverse set of issues, ranging from a change in daylight savings time to aging workforce and assets," states Rick Nicholson, vice president of research for Energy Insights.

The report covers predictions for the utilities and oil and gas industries. Other key predictions include:

Venture Capital in Energy Sector Will Continue to Expand

Venture capital (VC) investment in the energy industry through 3Q06 was triple the level of investment in all of 2005, making the energy sector the third-largest VC investment category after biotech and software. Leading VC firms from outside the energy sector are starting to make significant investments in "clean tech."

Change to Daylight Savings Time in the United States Will Disrupt Business as Usual As a result of the U.S. Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct 2005), daylight savings time will begin three weeks earlier (March versus April) and end one week later (November versus October). EPAct 2005 specifies that Congress can repeal the change after one year if energy savings are not achieved. "This would be the worst of both worlds, requiring companies to make daylight savings time changes twice," adds Nicholson.

Sensing Technologies Will Drive a Shift to a Real-Time Sense-and-Respond Paradigm

Sensing technology continues to advance, overcoming barriers of harsh environments, communication limitations, and security concerns. At the same time, the cost and availability of sensing devices, communications, and analytic applications are also improving. As a result, utilities will recognize sensing technologies as critical for managing operations and maintenance of the grid and generation plants and will plan for systemwide deployments.

Highlights from all ten predictions will be presented on January 11, 2007, at 12pm Eastern Time during a web conference. For more information and to register, visit: http://www.idc.com/webconferences .

To purchase the report, visit www.energy-insights.com .

About Energy Insights

Energy Insights, an IDC company, is a leading global provider of research-based advisory and consulting services to the energy and utilities industry. Staffed by senior analysts with decades of industry-specific business and technology experience, Energy Insights provides full coverage of the energy industry value chain – from upstream to retail activities. Energy Insights provides a portfolio of offerings that are relevant to both IT and business needs. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company.

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