If you followed the buzz around the State of the Union address, you may be wondering how to make money investing in alternative energy. After all, when even this president starts talking about "global climate change," you have to assume the issue has legs.
The new Democrat majority in Congress is already pushing ahead with ideas of its own. And alternative energy ought to be a slam dunk for America. Even those politicians who are still skeptical about global warming agree we need to cut our dependence on oil. After all, some of the money we spend on it is helping finance our enemies, from Al-Qaeda to Iran. And nobody, on either side of the aisle, can ignore the economic cost of oil prices at $50 a barrel or more.
So where should you put your money?
Hours after the president's speech, I talked to one of the most experienced professional investors in the field. Jack Robinson is the founder and president of Winslow Asset Management in Boston, which has been investing in green energy since 1983. Its (WGGFX) Winslow Green Growth Fund has a third of its money in the sector and has a terrific record.The first thing to note is that Robinson's warning investors away from the most popular and obvious companies -- such as those involved in corn ethanol and solar technology. They're overhyped and too risky, he says. "Everybody and their brother and their mother is going into the ethanol business," he says. "It's like a gold rush. It's scary. We are not involved in that space, and we continue to avoid it."