SolBid: Clean Energy News

Wildfires, Hurricanes, and….Bombogensis? Oh My!

 undefined  

Climate scientists have been warning us for decades about the dangerous consequences of climate change. The more frequent and intense storms the United States experienced in 2017, from extreme wildfires on the Pacific coast, to devastating hurricanes in the south/southeast, and now a bombogenesis ravaging the Northeast, have shown us more than ever before that climate change will likely be the greatest global threat our generation faces. Let’s take a look back at some of this year’s major disasters.

Utility-scale Clean Energy -- A Threat to Distributed Generation?

 

Duke Energy, one of the nation’s largest electric power holding companies, recently acquired a solar portfolio from SunPower Corp. The purchase includes the 15 megawatt (MW) Wildwood Solar II array, and the 20 MW Rio Bravo I and 20 MW Rio Bravo II systems, all located in Kern County, California.

The three acquisitions neighbor two pre-existing Duke Energy solar sites, and bring the total of the company’s solar holdings to 181 MW in California alone, and 2,900 MW overall solar capacity within its 52,000 MW portfolio.

U.S. Department of Energy Announces $46.2 Million to Advance Solar Power Technologies

 undefined  

The Department of Energy recently announced $46.2 million for 48 projects as part of its SunShot Initiative. The projects fall under two SunShot initiatives—the Photovoltaics Research and Development 2: Modules and Systems (PVRD2), which supports advances in solar photovoltaic technology; and Technology to Market 3 (T2M3), which is designed to support early-stage solar technology research.

Understanding Policy Recommendations in the Department of Energy’s Grid Study

 undefined  

On Wednesday night, the Department of Energy released its highly anticipated and debated grid study. Back in April 2017, Energy Secretary Rick Perry issued a memorandum requesting a study to examine electricity markets and grid reliability. Beyond an evaluation of the current status of the electricity system, the April 14 memo asked staff to “provide concrete policy recommendations and solutions.” To that end, DOE staff prepared a list of eight policy recommendations. Let’s break them down:

Mr. Trump, "Make America Great Again" through Solar Energy

 undefined  

The people of the United States have voted and their choice has been made. Donald J. Trump will be taking his seat in The White House. We need to bring to Mr. Trump's attention the importance of progressing clean and renewable energy technologies. Our new President needs to understand that these technologies harness tremendous environmental and economic benefits and should be an "on the agenda" item.

Trump to Issue Final Ruling on ITC Section 201 Solar Trade Case by End of Next Week

 undefined  

SolBid has provided consistent coverage of the ITC Solar Tariff Case as it has evolved over the past four months. In August, I reported on the “proposed” solar tariff submitted to the U.S. International Trade Commission by Suniva and SolarWorld America, two U.S. based but majority Chinese and German-owned companies (respectively), to impose a tariff and floor price on imported crystalline silicon photovoltaic solar panels of $0.40/watt and a floor price of $0.78/watt.

Transparent Solar Technology

 undefined  

Richard Lunt, the Johansen Crosby Endowed Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at Michigan State University, and his team have recently pioneered a new technology that could change the face of the the solar industry. This new technology is a transparent luminescent solar concentrator that can be placed on building surfaces to collect solar energy without impeding views.

The Rise of Solar in K-12 Schools

 undefined  

The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has released a series of articles and studies last month that look at the rise of solar energy in American K-12 schools. “There are now 5,489 K-12 schools in the United States that use solar energy, nearly double the total solar capacity that was installed at schools in 2014” say SEIA. The movement to solar is most likely due to the 67% reduction is cost in solar installations over the past 10 years. This reduction in installation cost is from the government tax and incentive programs that have encourage individuals, commercial businesses as well as government municipality to install solar panels. The Department of Energy’s Sunshot Initiative Program is one example of a federal initiative to reduce the cost of solar by 75% to make it a competitive source of energy in the market.

The Future of Renewable Energy in Puerto Rico

   

In the wake of Hurricane Maria, many Puerto Ricans have been left in the dark. The massive storm left the island’s electrical grid in ruins, and three weeks later, the vast majority of its population remains without electricity. It can be difficult to rebuild in the aftermath of such a large natural disaster, but solar energy has the potential to bring new light to the territory.

Sunshine State's Solar Policy Riddled with Gray Areas

The_Sunshine_State.jpg

 

Upon initial impression, Florida’s Amendment 1— "Rights of Electricity Consumers Regarding Solar Energy Choice"—  seems very progressive. It allows "consumers to own or lease solar equipment installed on their property to generate electricity for their own use", will ensure protection of their "consumer rights and public health, safety and welfare". It even protects those who choose to forgo solar, "not [requiring them] to subsidize the costs of backup power and electric grid access to those who do [install solar]". It even promises to leave the state and local finances unscathed. 

Rising Electricity Rates Highlight the Power of Solar

 undefined  

Energy is an expensive commodity. Electricity rates have risen steadily over the last two decades in both the residential and commercial sectors. And a comparison of electricity rates from June 2017 to the same period last year shows a price increase in every region of the United States for all sectors.

Rhode Island Signals Commitment to Clean Energy with New Legislation

 undefined  

New England states have been recognized as innovators in the clean energy space for the last decade. This week, Rhode Island proved that this title is still well-deserved. This Wednesday, Governor Gina Raimondo signed legislation supporting the growth of clean energy in Rhode Island.

Proposed Tariff on Imported PV Panels Threatens Future of the U.S. Solar Industry

 undefined  

Solar has become one of the fastest growing industries in the United States in the last few years. In fact, for the first time ever, U.S. solar ranked as the number one source of new electric generating capacity additions on an annual basis. But a novel solar tariff on imported panels stands to jeopardize future growth of the industry.

ITC Proposes Three Recommended Remedies in Section 201 Solar Trade Case

 undefined  

SolBid has provided consistent coverage of the ITC Solar Tariff Case as it has evolved over the past four months. In August, I reported on the “proposed” solar tariff submitted to the U.S. International Trade Commission by Suniva and SolarWorld America, two U.S. based but majority Chinese and German-owned companies (respectively), to impose a tariff and floor price on imported crystalline silicon photovoltaic solar panels of $0.40/watt and a floor price of $0.78/watt.

Solar and Natural Gas Industry Experts and Senators Urge FERC to Reject DOE’s Proposed Cost Recovery Rule

undefined

 

Last Friday, the Department of Energy directed the Federal Energy Regulatory Committee to open a rulemaking proceeding to provide “full recovery of costs” for power plants that keep 90 days of fuel supplied onsite. DOE officials wrote that the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR) would enhance the resilience of the nation’s electric system and “protect the American people from energy outages expected to result from the loss of this fuel-secure generation."

 

Impending Solar Eclipse Highlights Solar’s Contribution to the Grid

undefined

 

On Monday, August 21, 2017, North America will bear witness to an eclipse of the sun. The path of totality- where the moon will completely cover the sun and the sun's tenuous atmosphere- is a diagonal line which spans across fourteen states from Lincoln Beach, Oregon to Charleston, South Carolina. Observers outside this path will still see a partial solar eclipse.

Places Of Higher Education Advocating For Solar

undefined

 

From coast to coast, colleges and universities have increased their energy efficiency exponentially throughout the years. Recently, we see bigger projects being undertaken. These projects are important in the renewable energy field because not only is it helping increase their facilities energy efficiency and decreasing their carbon footprint, but it also allows the leaders of the future to experience and learn about clean energy.

A Conversation with Todd Hickman of Hickman & Sgroi Electrical, Inc.

undefined

 

When electrical contractors Todd Hickman and Steve Sgroi first installed solar panels on the roof of Todd’s own home back in 2011, they did it as a kind-of test, to determine whether the technology would be suitable for their residential and commercial customers. Upon seeing the immediate positive impact the system had on lowering not only Todd’s personal electric bill, but also on the environment, they were certain solar made sense.

Chips, Soup, and Cherries: Three Food Producers Harnessing the Power of the Sun


undefined
 

In today’s rapidly evolving energy industry, more and more companies are beginning to realize the benefits of installing on-site solar technology. Businesses that deploy solar can expect energy cost savings, excellent returns on investment, rebates and tax breaks, and environmental benefits. Investing in solar energy, as well, sends a strong signal to consumers that a company is conscious of its energy use and environmental impact, which may provide additional financial gains through public relations and marketing benefits. Check out these three food companies which are harnessing the power of the sun.

Creeping Regrets: Nevada Seeks to Revive Rooftop Solar Industry

undefined

 

Nevada’s promising rooftop solar industry hit a wall last year, after state legislation slashed rates for net metering and cut into financial incentives for homeowners. The new standard rendered solar panels a costly investment out of range for a majority of Nevadans, and was pushed largely by the state’s Public Utilities Commission (PUC).

Avengers Actors Mark Ruffalo and Chris Evans Honor Real-Life Clean Energy Heroes of Atlanta

 Heros
(Image courtesy of Twitter)
 

Last May, Atlanta became the 27th city in the United States, and the largest Southern city to commit to 100% renewable energy. Introduced by Councilman Kwanza Hall, the Atlanta City Council unanimously approved a measure that establishes a community-wide goal of transitioning to 100 percent renewable energy by 2035.

Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth: The Executive Order, Explained

 WV  

This post is part one of a two-post series exploring the design and potential implications of President Trump's recent Executive Order, Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth.

Early last week, President Donald Trump released an executive order with steep consequences. Flanked by representatives from the fossil fuel industries, Trump endorsed a declaration that aspires to revive a plummeting domestic coal industry and, as promised during his campaign, breathe economic vitality back into mining communities across the country.

A Brief History Of Solar Energy

 Solar History  

It is essential to be comfortable with the growing solar energy industry, and the best way to do that is to understand its history. In 1839, Edmond Becquerel had observed the photovoltaic effect through an electrode in a conductive solution exposed to light. This is the first time we see scientists conduct solar-related research, according to Thought Co.

5 Celebrities Fighting for Solar

 undefined  

Solar power technology is spreading rapidly throughout the United States, having grown 95% in the last year, topping out at 14,626 megawatts of solar PV installed in 2016. But everyday people aren’t the only one’s realizing the benefits of solar power—a handful of environmentally conscious and trendsetting celebrities have recently demonstrated their passion for renewable energy by installed solar panels on their houses and speaking out in favor of renewable energy.

Home