By Tina Casey, CleanTechnica
It started as a trickle and now the floodgates are open. Solar arrays that once sat on barren ground are now festooned with plants that attract bees, birds, and butterflies. Even the US Energy Department is getting into the act. With that in mind, let’s take a look at four newly minted solar power plants that have built-in benefits for pollinators, too. Read more here.
Power, plants: Seed mixes and ag innovation for PV solar, Solar Builder article by Rob Davis, Director of the Center for Pollinators in Energy at Fresh Energy
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) forecasts farmers and other landowners will lease 2-3 million acres of land for ground-mounted solar arrays by 2030, a 10-fold increase from 2020. This rapid bloom in leasing land to produce solar energy isn’t just a lifeline for farmers looking to stabilize on-farm income, it’s also a once-in-a-generation opportunity to create habitat at scale to help species critical to agriculture and ecosystem health. Climate change and loss of habitat pose significant threats to honey bees, bumblebees, monarch butterflies and a wide variety of pollinators. A recent global analysis found that 40 percent of pollinator species may be at risk of extinction in the coming years.
Engie and Hannon Armstrong Form Multi-Gigawatt US Renewables Partnership, Greentech Media The portfolio will stretch across five states and encompass both wind and solar projects. Most of the power the Engie-Hannon portfolio produces will be sold to companies looking to increase their renewable electricity, such as T-Mobile and Amazon.
- A power switch in Colorado, by Allen Best, Mountain Town News
At the stroke of midnight, Colorado’s Delta-Montrose Electric Association officially became independent of Tri-State Generation and Transmission. The electrical cooperative in west-central Colorado is at least $26 million poorer. That was the cost of getting out of its all-requirements for wholesale supplies from Tri-State 20 years early. But Delta-Montrose expects to be richer in coming years as local resources, particularly photovoltaic solar, get developed with the assistance of the new wholesale provider Guzman Energy.
- Tri-State: Moving a cooperative power provider from coal to clean energy, by Joe Smyth, Clean Cooperative. This article summarizes the key developments over the last few years that led Tri-State to begin a transition away from its reliance on coal, and was first published as a contribution to Energy-Democracy.net
BANK OF AMERICA
Duke Energy, Bank of America partner on Triad solar farm, Winston Salem Journal
Monday’s joint announcement marks a step toward achieving Bank of America’s goal of “being carbon neutral and utilizing 100% renewable electricity,” bank executive Andrew Plepler said in a written statement.
MORE ON WHO’S BEHIND ANTI-NET-METERING FERC PETITION
- Group Seeking to Overturn State Net Metering Reveals Member With Utility Ties, Greentech Media. The only publicly disclosed member of anti-net-metering group NERA happens to run a utility consultancy in New England.
- Previously Posted: 6,000 Maine solar projects remain in limbo due to uncertainty over federal decision on net metering petition, Pine Tree Watch. More than 57,000 organizations and individuals formally opposed the petition, which would eliminate incentives for investing in solar across the nation and reduce the benefits for thousands of Mainers already committed to solar projects. Reports indicate that the Taxpayers Protection Alliance, the Heartland Institute and NERA all have ties to the Koch brothers, who have funded climate denial and pro-fossil fuel campaigns for roughly three decades.
- Previously Posted: Public Citizen Unmasks Suspect Ratepayer Group Aiming To Disrupt U.S. Solar Policy, Public Citizen News Release
- City Of Sydney Goes 100% Renewable, CleanTechnica
As of July 1, Sydney, the largest city in Australia, [now powers] all its operations — street lights, sports facilities, buildings, and the historic Town Hall — with 100% renewable energy from local sources.
- 45,000 renewables jobs are Australia’s for the taking – but how many will go to coal workers?, PV Magazine Australia. As the global renewables transition accelerates, the future for coal regions has become a big worry. This raises an important question: can renewables create the right jobs in the right places to employ former coal workers?