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Title: Crowdfunding for renewable and sustainable energy projects : an exploratory case study approach
Authors: Lam, PTI 
Law, AOK
Issue Date: Jul-2016
Source: Renewable and sustainable energy reviews, 2016, v. 60, p. 11-20
Abstract: Global warming has become one of the major challenges faced by the world today. Use of renewable energy can help mitigate the adverse effects of climate change and environmental pollution. However, owing to high up-front costs and the risk of commercializing renewable energy initiatives compared with conventional technology, a barrier exists in securing financing of renewable energy projects. This article aims to explore the knowledge of the emerging crowdfunding in general and more specifically, to focus on how best to employ this new funding source for renewable and sustainable energy projects. Firstly, incorporation of literature findings is undertaken from two fields: crowdfunding and renewable energy development. A case study approach is employed to demonstrate how crowdfunding has been applied in renewable projects. Eight international cases were chosen to represent various crowdfunding models that differ in terms of reward and returns associated with the investment. Crowdfunding can play a significant role at the start of a renewable and sustainable energy projects life-cycle. A variety of crowdfunding approaches may be used to finance the early stages of renewable energy development, particularly when stakeholders are the beneficiaries, or the concerned groups related to environmental protection and sustainability. Crowdfunding is also suitable for supporting research and development efforts of innovative green technology start-ups. This article introduces crowdfunding as a new source of green financing and gives evidences for using crowdfunding in renewable and sustainable energy development, in comparison with other funding sources.
Keywords: Crowdfunding
Green financing
Renewable energy development
Publisher: Pergamon Press
Journal: Renewable and sustainable energy reviews 
ISSN: 1364-0321
EISSN: 1879-0690
DOI: 10.1016/j.rser.2016.01.046
Rights: © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
© 2016 This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license
NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. The definitive version Lam, P. T., & Law, A. O. (2016). Crowdfunding for renewable and sustainable energy projects: An exploratory case study approach. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 60, 11-20 is available at
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