Tag Archives: Nebraska Environmental Trust

Building the tiny house of the future

Written by Jason Kuiper, The Wire, OPPD Blog

Dr. Bing Chen, Ph.D., UNL Professor of electrical and computer engineering, is “developing the area’s first sustainable small house.”

It is a project the former chair of the computer and electronics department feels will be a disruptive technology. Chen said it will change the way he and other baby boomers find alternative housing solutions during their golden years.

Dr. Chen is partnering with OPPD and other groups on the Small Sustainable House.
Construction will begin this summer on UNO’s main campus. With so many baby boomers
ready to enter their next phase, Chen said, good affordable housing is a growing need all over the country. Read more here.

Prototype Image: Chen said the home is well-insulated and can be heated with just 16 candles. The home will have 32 PV solar collectors on the roof to generate electricity and have a whole-house battery storage system.

City plans dedication for Oct. 1

The Fremont Tribune

The City of Fremont will be hosting a dedication for Solar Farm No. 2, the electric vehicle charging stations and the plug-in hybrid vehicles at 10 a.m. Oct. 1 at Solar Farm No. 2, located at 3851 East Hills Farm Road (near the intersection of Old Highway 275 and Hills Farm Road). The public is invited. Read more here.

Photo Courtesy of Troy Schaben, Assistant Fremont City Administrator of Utilities: Fremont’s First Solar Farm

RELATED NEWS STORY
City’s electric vehicle charging stations up-and-running, by Colin Larson, Fremont Tribune

City’s electric vehicle charging stations up-and-running

By Colin Larson, Fremont Tribune

The City of Fremont recently completed installation of two ChargePoint electric vehicle (EV) charging stations — located in downtown Fremont, and along the 23rd Street corridor . . . The city purchased the two ChargePoint stations with help from a grant from the Nebraska Environmental Trust through the Nebraska Community Energy Alliance. The city received a $300,000 grant toward Solar Farm No. 2, 50 percent of the cost of two ChargePoint public electric vehicle charging stations, and 50 percent of the cost of five plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) Kia Niro crossover vehicles. Read more here.

ChargePoint Photo

More solar energy projects expected to come online this year

By Mike Loizzo, Nebraska Radio Network

The Nebraska Community Energy Alliance (NCEA) is planning to expand its solar power footprint. The cities of Superior and Fremont, and Allen Consolidated Schools, are the latest Alliance members seeking help paying for solar panels. The Nebraska Environmental Trust’s grant committee is recommending funding for those Nebraska Flyway Community Solar Projects. Learn more here.

Recent NCEA Reports

Gothenburg solar array to be completed next month

The Gothenburg Times

Back in June, the Gothenburg City Council voted to add another 500 kilowatts in 2018 to the city’s solar project, which the council had approved a few months before. The initial phase of that project is now well underway and expected to be completed by late October.

Continue reading.

Photo: The posts are in the ground and the solar panels will soon be added for Phase 1 of the city’s solar project in southwest Gothenburg. Credit: GenPro Energy Solutions

A Nebraska Farm’s Renewable Energy Enterprise Is Reaping Profits While Protecting Soil & Water

Danny and Josie Kluthe own the first on-farm electrical generator in Nebraska powered by manure methane. The methane is harvested from an anaerobic manure digester on their swine farm in Dodge, Nebraska to produce electricity and compressed natural gas (CNG).

Some of their homegrown, renewable energy is used for the farm. The excess, enough to power approximately 50 homes, is sold to the Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) through the Kluthe’s alternative energy business, called OLean Energy. NPPD distributes the energy to neighboring Cuming County Public Power District.

It all started with the Kluthe’s desire to be good neighbors, to control the odor from their farm, particularly with a church nearby.  At a symposium  presented by the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality and the Nebraska Public Power District, Danny discovered that the manure from an anaerobic digester essentially comes out odorless. “So it seemed like a perfect fit.”

The USDA and the Nebraska Environmental Trust provided grants to help fund the construction of the farm’s electrical generator. The manure methane produced by the digester is piped to the generator to power it.

“We are displacing $4-per-gallon diesel with the methane we produce here on the farm, so the payback is phenomenal. We now can make our own electricity, our own vehicle fuel and our own fuel to heat the barns. It’s nice to be energy-independent and not be at the mercy of energy costs.”

To read more about the Kluthe family and additional ways they are protecting the soil and water resources at Bacon Hill, share their story and connect with others, click on this link: http://globegazette.com/article_c46cafba-2e1a-50bc9716db629ab74df1.html#.Umktng5a4OQ.twitter

The Midwest Rural Energy Council’s website provides resources on Anaerobic Digesters and Biogas, including: Anaerobic Digester Basics, Financial Assistance & Economics of Using Anaerobic Digesters, Farmers’ Digester Experience, Organizations that Support Anaerobic Digestion Endeavors, and more: www.mrec.org/anaerobicdigestion.html

The US Environmental Protection Agency’s AgStar Program provides an online Anaerobic Digester (AD) 101 guide, answers to Frequent Questions, Fact Sheets, and additional resources at this link: www.epa.gov/agstar/anaerobic/index.html