Category Archives: NewsBlog

Eight Solar And Storage Trends To Keep An Eye On

By Betsy Lillian, Solar Energy Magazine

With the global solar industry expected to reach 100 GW this year, following nearly 20% year-over-year growth in annual installations in 2017, IHS Markit has identified eight solar and energy storage market trends to watch. “Solar Energy and Storage Trends,” a new white paper from IHS Markit, identifies the following significant trends with the most impact on the global solar market: Click here to continue.

The IHS Markit white paper can be downloaded here.

Pixels Photo




American Conservation Coalition (ACC)

  • One of ACC’s ten Principles of Conservative Environmentalism: “A conservatism that does not practice restraint, humility, and good stewardship—especially of the natural world—is not fundamentally conservative.” Initiatives include the development of an environmental scorecard of Republicans in Congress.
  • ACC Press Release: College Republican Clean Energy Coalition Expands to 30 states

After Back-to-Back Years of Double-Digit Growth, U.S. Solar Passes 50 GW Milestone

Solar Energy Industries Association Blog

At the end of 2015, there was just north of 25 gigawatts (GW) of solar PV installed in the United States. Now, after back-to-back years of double-digit gigawatt growth (15 GW in 2016 and 10.6 GW in 2017), the solar industry has more than doubled its total installed capacity to 53.3 GW through the end of 2017. The release of the U.S. Solar Market Insight 2017 Year in Review finds that the solar industry is doing pretty well, even after a year of obstacles, from the trade case to a number of state policy actions. Read more here.



Renewable Energy Has More Economic Benefits Than You Know

By Jake Richardson, Clean Technica

Renewable energy is already cheaper than other energy options in most of the world, but it comes with other economic and societal benefits as well. Because of the number of countries investing in renewable energy, the complexity of their national economies and their energy infrastructure details, it isn’t possible to cover everything in one online article. The subject would be better addressed in a book. So, this article is intended only to be a snapshot of some key high-level points. Click here to continue reading.

Photo: Telesis Inc’s solar array in Lincoln’s Haymarket





Press Release: USDA Invests $276 Million in Rural Electric Infrastructure

USDA’s $276 million investment will build nearly 1,000 miles of line and improve 733 miles of line to meet current and future needs of rural businesses and residents. It will also support $65 million in smart grid technologies to help rural electric utilities reduce outages and integrate new systems.

Smart grid includes technological enhancements such as metering, substation automation, computer applications, two-way communications and geospatial information systems.

Investments are being made in Colorado, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Ohio and Virginia. The loan guarantees are being provided through USDA Rural Development’s Electric Program, which is the successor to the Rural Electrification Administration. Read the entire release here.

 Electric Loans – USDA Rural Development (PDF)

Recognizing Women in Green Energy on International Women’s Day

The Solar Foundation’s latest National Solar Jobs Census shows there were 250,271 solar workers in the United States as of 2017. Women made up 27% of the solar workforce last year. That number is expected to grow in 2018, thanks in no small part to national networks furthering greater diversity in the clean energy workforce and advancing the roles of women who are growing the clean energy economy while protecting the environment where they live and work. These networks provide educational opportunities and resources, not only for women currently employed in clean energy professions but also for girls who are considering or pursuing a career in green energy.

International Women’s Day provides an excellent opportunity to recognize and to learn more about the women employed in solar and wind energy, energy efficiency and other clean energy jobs. Below are four professional networks and several websites for girls that provide a wealth of information.

Photo Credit: Women in Solar Energy (WISE)

Professional Networks

Websites to explore with your daughters or granddaughters:

To recommend another website, please send an email to

Happy International Women’s Day!

Iowa State University Research Finds Wind Farms Positively Impact Crops

By Ed Adcock, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

AMES, Iowa — Iowa State University researchers have found that wind turbines located in agricultural fields are a plus for the crops growing around them. The overall effects on crops growing in wind farms appear to be positive said Gene Takle, Iowa State agronomy professor. He has led a team of plant and soil scientists along with extension specialists who have been looking into the effects since 2009. They started their work after seeing more wind farms and turbines pop up around the state. The new land use was positive for the landowners where they were located, but the researchers wondered if it was the same for the farmers growing crops. Read more here.

Pixabay Photo: Iowa Farm




Climate Action Makes (Business) Sense for U.S. Utilities

By Sheryl Carter and Elisheva Mittelman

Michigan’s DTE Energy recently pledged to reduce carbon pollution by more than 80 percent by 2050. Another Michigan utility, Consumers Energy, committed to phase out coal generation over the next two decades and generate at least 40 percent of its energy with renewable resources. Duke Energy, with customers in six states in the Southeast and Midwest, has committed to reducing its carbon emissions 40 percent by 2030. But why are these and many other utilities doing this now, when the Trump administration is working to roll back climate and clean energy action? Because it just makes good business sense. Read more here, including what actions a number of other utilities are taking.

SEU 2018 survey: Utilities shaken, not moved, by Trump policies. Utility Dive’s fifth annual State of the Electric Utility survey shows a sector committed to the clean energy transition, but wary of policies coming out of Washington.

New study shows Facebook data centers contributed $5.8 billion to U.S. economy

RTI International analyzed Facebook’s expenditures for U.S. data center construction and operations and estimated that, when accounting for multiplier effects, Facebook data centers have contributed a cumulative $5.8 billion in gross domestic product (GDP) to the U.S. economy from 2010-2016, or $835 million per year. This contribution estimate is primarily driven by the upfront capital investments for construction. Facebook’s renewable energy goals also drive third-party investment in solar and wind farms to provide clean energy to data centers in Iowa, Texas, New Mexico, and Nebraska and eventually in Ohio and Virginia.

The Impact of Facebook’s U.S. Data Center Fleet is available here.



Tesla has begun installing world’s largest rooftop pv system

FPL completes 298 MW of solar

New (Brief) SEIA Video

Welcome to the Next Chapter 

SEIA President and CEO, Abigail Ross Hopper, provides insight on the outcome of the Sec. 201 solar trade case and the steps SEIA is taking to ensure the future of the solar industry is a bright one.