By Ray Gaesser, Globe Gazette
Iowa recently made news for surpassing 40 percent of its total energy generation from wind and installing a record amount of wind power in a single year. While we should take time to celebrate this milestone, we need to double down on these important infrastructure investments to aid in our state’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
As chair of the Iowa Conservative Energy Forum, I can tell you that wind energy’s economic impact is needed in rural Iowa now more than ever. Rural landowners in Iowa are receiving $69 million annually in land lease payments. This consistent source of income can help farmers and landowners weather the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
NEWS FROM OTHER STATES
- 8minute Solar Energy Secures $225 Million Letter of Credit Facility to Support the Greenfield Development of its 18-Gigawatt Pipeline of Solar and Energy Storage Projects, 8minute Solar Energy News Release. 8minute will use the LC facility to cost effectively post securities for its power purchase agreements (PPAs) and interconnection agreements for its 18-gigawatt (GW) pipeline of solar and storage projects throughout California, Texas and the Southwestern United States. See job postings here: 8-minute Solar Careers
- Alliant Energy Announces 6 Solar Projects Totaling 675 MW In Wisconsin, CleanTechnica
Last year, Alliant Energy announced plans to install 1,000 MW of solar power capacity in Wisconsin by 2023.
- Wisconsin Solar School: Solon Springs solar array sheds light on renewable energy, Superior Telegram. The 109 kilowatt-hour system is expected to generate 44% of the school’s electricity, saving the district about $12,600 annually. It will also shine a light on renewable energy for students. Two panels will be wired to a light at the front of the school, with an educational kiosk that tracks the array’s energy output.
- Oil-Bust Refugees Are Being Courted By Clean Energy in Texas, Bloomberg Green
When boiled down, much of oil, gas, wind and solar is about building projects and selling the output. That requires workers with backgrounds in geology, land acquisition, engineering, finance, asset management and energy contracts.
- Ann Arbor unanimously adopts ambitious roadmap to carbon-neutrality, MLive
Ann Arbor now officially has a plan on the books to make the community carbon-neutral by 2030. After months of discussion, City Council voted unanimously early Tuesday morning, June 2, to adopt the A2Zero plan, a roadmap to a greener future prepared by city staff.
- Phoenix gains high ranking among cities using solar power, Phoenix Business Journal
ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING
- Cities need more expertise, utility support in 100% renewables push: report, Smart Cities Dive. If cities are to hit their targets of using 100% renewable energy, they need to build more expertise, invest more money into those goals and garner more support from utilities, according to a report from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR), the University of Michigan’s School for Environment and Sustainability and other partners.
- What Offshore Wind Can Bring to the Corporate PPA Party, Greentech Media
Corporations increasingly want 24/7 renewable power. Offshore wind may help make that a reality in some markets.
- Renewable energy and the free market economy, PV Magazine
Contributor Shivapriya Balasubramanian is a senior associate at Madison Energy Investments with experience investing in clean energy infrastructure in the U.S. and India.
NEW INTERNATIONAL RENEWABLE ENERGY AGENCY REPORT
- Renewables Increasingly Beat Even Cheapest Coal Competitors on Cost, IRENA News Release. “We have reached an important turning point in the energy transition. The case for new and much of the existing coal power generation, is both environmentally and economically unjustifiable,” said Francesco La Camera, Director-General of IRENA. “Renewable energy is increasingly the cheapest source of new electricity, offering tremendous potential to stimulate the global economy and get people back to work. Renewable investments are stable, cost-effective and attractive offering consistent and predictable returns while delivering benefits to the wider economy.”
- See IRENA’s interactive infographic on How Falling Costs Make Renewables a Cost-effective Investment
- Energy firms urged to mothball coal plants as cost of solar tumbles, The Guardian
The International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena) has found that up to 1,200 gigawatts of the world’s existing coal capacity could cost more to run than the cost of new utility-scale solar plants. If energy companies replaced only their most expensive coal plants with new solar power projects or onshore wind farms, totalling 500 GW globally, they could save up to $23bn every year and wipe out 5% of last year’s total global carbon emissions, according to Irena.
With North Dakota, All 48 Continental US States Have Tesla Superchargers, CleanTechnica
Overall, there are now 1,870 Tesla Supercharger stations and 16,585 Supercharging ports around the world.