About 8 YieldCos have been formed in 2014 as a way to tap the stock market for funds. NextEra, SunEdison and others have created yieldCo companies, and sold a lot of their renewable assets to these new companies. The new companies pay dividents to shareholders based on revenues from electricity generation. Selling assets to YieldCos frees up a lot of capital for new RE investments.
According to Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) “By statute, MLPs have only been available to investors in energy portfolios for oil, natural gas, coal extraction, and pipeline projects. These projects get access to capital at a lower cost and are more liquid than traditional financing approaches to energy projects, making them highly effective at attracting private investment." He continues, “Investors in renewable energy projects, however, have been explicitly prevented from forming MLPs, starving a growing portion of America's domestic energy sector of the capital it needs to build and grow.”