Proved reserves are expected to last until year 2067, which could propel the adoption of renewable sources even quicker, and send this solar stock soaring…
Fifty-three… that’s the number of years it would take to extract the remaining amount of proved global oil reserves based on current rate of production, according to the folks at BP plc (NYSE:BP).
In its annual report, BP states that from the end of 2013, there was approximately 1.688 trillion barrels of crude left to extract… an amount that would last about 53.3 years.
And while some people may be shocked at these estimates, this is actually the most optimistic report out of BP to date.
You see, 1.688 trillion barrels is 1.1% higher than at the end of 2012.
And over the past decade, the amount of proved reserves have jumped by 27% — or 350 billion barrels.
Some of the increase can be attributed to new discoveries in Russia (900 million barrels) and Venezuela (800 million barrels).
But those findings pale in comparison to the amount of new proven reserves found in the US.
As a result of hydraulic fracking and horizontal drilling, BP estimates that US reserves have climbed 26% to 44.2 billion barrels compared with the previous year.
But although reserves appear to be increasing each year, consumption doesn’t seem to slow. That’s why rapidly depleting reserves are correlated to the growing interest for alternative energy sources.
And not surprisingly, solar stocks have been on the rise over the past year. In fact, the NYSE Bloomberg Global Solar Energy Index (SOLAR:IND), which is comprised of a basket of various solar-energy stocks across the value chain, has climbed over 36% since last July.
Increased demand, improvements in the supply chain, government support, and better pricing, all contributed to a renewed interest in solar energy – especially in China.
But what’s interesting to note is that although a lot of attention of late has been on Chinese manufacturing impacting global markets, one American solar company has found success in building up its market share – albeit in a country that’s been in desperate need of energy diversification.
Top Solar Stock To Buy Today:
San Jose-based SunPower Corp. (NASDAQ:SPWR) has spent a number of years making inroads into the booming solar market that is Japan.
In 2013, Japan reached the 10 GW milestone for cumulative photovoltaic (PV) capacity for the first time — making it just the fifth country in the world to hit that mark.
Germany, Italy, China, and the US are the only other nations to do so, with China and US achieving it just a few months prior to Japan.
Japan likely would’ve been the world’s first some years back, but a shift in the country’s energy plan towards nuclear generation scaled back its solar investments.
In fact, Japan was the first country to hit 1 GW back in 2004.
Now that nuclear power is on the backburner, solar power use in the country is expected to explode.
Unfortunately for most foreign solar firms, Japan has its share of domestic companies and brands that its consumers are quite loyal to.
So rather than try to compete head-to-head with the likes of Kyocera (NYSE:KYO), Panasonic, or Mitsubishi, SunPower has instead partnered with another Japanese consumer giant, Toshiba.
Between 2010 and 2012, SunPower delivered over 150 MW of solar panels to Toshiba.
A contract extension was signed through 2018 that will see at least 100 MW more of SunPower’s highest-efficiency residential solar panels delivered to Toshiba.
SunPower’s E20/250NE solar panel features a 20.1% efficiency rating delivering 250 watts per 72-cell module, which ranks it one of the most efficient in the world.
The partnership has definitely paid off, as the Company saw a 64% increase in its 2013 Asia-Pacific market revenues.
The APAC region accounts for over 36% of SunPower’s business, so getting a foothold on a burgeoning market like Japan is huge.
Add to that, the Company is setting up a manufacturing plant in the Philippines, which will better serve the needs of customers throughout Asia, not to mention the cost-savings on shipments.
But while there’s great potential in Asia, SPWR hasn’t forgotten about their business stateside.
The Company recently raised $220 million from Bank of America Merrill Lynch to help grow its successful residential solar leasing business.
In recent years, its solar leasing program has helped hedge against fluctuating prices in panel manufacturing.
SPWR’s quarterly revenue growth year over year is at a steady 9%, and earnings per share for the trailing twelve months (TTM) is $1.47.
Since the industry began picking up steam at the beginning of 2013, SPWR’s stock has skyrocketed nearly 350%.
But considering where the company is going, I believe there’s great upside still ahead.