Thursday, October 21, 2010

Putting the “B” into BrightSource.

I have said recently that the BrightSource Energy folks are a worthy and
formidable foe. But I never expected to see a move like they pulled from
their hat on September 21, 2010. You can also read about this coup here.

This appointment of John E. Bryson as board chairman should convince
any remaining doubters out there of BrightSource’s intention to go public,
as well as their shrewdness. And as John Woolard prophetically remarked
in a video on this site, how they always plan long term and move slowly.

A brief summary of Mr. Bryson’s accomplishments might clarify the situation a little.
Retired 2008 from Southern California Edison as chairman. Adviser to KKR,
one of the largest merger and acquisition firms in the world. Board member
on Disney’s and Boeing’s board of directors. Oh and did I mention that in
1970 he co-founded the Natural Resources Defense Council, now the
noted “carbonmentalist” firm that employs Ms. Johanna Wald, skewered
regularly here on the backporch and her former Sierra Club sidekick, Carl

You know it is truly fascinating to me how the stars and Jupiter align sometimes.
When I started this blog in January of this year and soon became aware of the
B.S.E’rs, I never dreamed that one day I would write this post. What a lack of
imagination on my part, what a lack of foresight! I won’t quit my day job anytime soon.

Yes, those folks at BrightSource Energy have managed to all along be one step
ahead of us at every turn. With help from contacts in the “carbonmentalist” movement
working on the inside in powerful positions, i.e. on the RETI Steering Committee, to
the Senate Majority leader Harry Reid having a million dollar fundraising at the B.S.E.
headquarters, to no environmentalist group being willing to sue over their Ivanpah
project, to teaming up with Google among others, including retired teachers pension
funds, etc etc- they just seem to always be lucky as hell or maybe even smarter
than the average bear

When the rest of us finally, deep down, understand this, maybe then we can come
up with a strategy to contain or stop them.

But it will be a difficult task with Mr. Bryson now as an opponent, one skilled in the ways
of government bureaucracy as well. I neglected to mention that he also served as the
head of the California Public Utilities Commission and the California State Water Resources Control Board. Yep, if we didn’t know before how tough of an opponent
we had in BrightSource, this new hiring should drive the point home.