Tag Archives: renewable energy development in U.S.

Why Should Only the Wealthy Get Solar Panels?

By Gillian B, White, The Atlantic

Solar panels are seen in the Palm Springs area

WASHINGTON, D.C.—For homeowners and renters, drawing energy from solar panels on their roofs can be very cost-effective: Some estimates put monthly electric-bill savings between 10 and 30 percent, and on top of that, households that install solar systems can get 30 percent of the cost as a tax credit. But for many, installing solar panels is simply not within reach: Setting up such systems can cost tens of thousands of dollars, which means that their use—and subsequent savings—are predominantly enjoyed by wealthy households. That’s why, as Washington, D.C., moves forward with its clean-energy plan—which would have at least half the city’s power coming from renewable sources by 2032—it is doing so with an eye on inequality. The city has mandated that a portion of the money set aside for solar initiatives—just under one-third—target low-income neighborhoods. Continue reading.

Photo: Lucy Nicholson / Reuters. Solar installation in the Palm Springs area, California

RELATED READING
FACT SHEET: Obama Administration Announces Clean Energy Savings for All Americans Initiative
A PV Panel On Every Roof,
William S. Becker, Executive Director, Presidential Climate Action Project, Huffington Post Blog

ADDITIONAL RENEWABLE ENERGY / ENERGY EFFICIENCY NEWS
Minnesota Power Seeks Proposals for Large-Scale Wind, Solar Energy, and Customer-Driven Resources, Business Wire
A new crop is now growing in Idaho: Solar energy, Idaho Statesman
Highlights:
Idaho’s first commercial solar farm has just been built south of Boise
Five other solar farms in Southeast Idaho are are set to be completed this year
Idaho Power is proposing a community solar project in Southeast Boise
Renewable Energy Is Key to Fighting Climate Change, Natural Resources Defense Council
New program helps hospitals advance solar beyond their campuses, Midwest Energy News
5 Common Myths About Residential Solar, Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy
In Texas, 1 company is making rooftop solar work without net mtering, Utility Dive
SEIA Releases New Guide to Land Leases for Solar
US moves up in ACEEE world efficiency rankings, but still plenty of room for improvement: The U.S. is ranked #8 in the ACEEE rankings, up from #13 two years ago, Utility Dive

Achieving Clean Power Plan targets well ahead of schedule

By Daniel S. Cohan, contributor, and Leah Y. Parks, The Hill
The Hill
Technologies from LED lights to electric cars to heat pumps are leaping past their less-efficient successors and are poised for mass adoption. Meanwhile, plunging prices push wind turbines and now solar panels into pole position for least-cost new electric capacity. Together, the technological innovations and market shifts are drastically reducing our nation’s need for coal for electric generation, and is even slicing into natural gas demand as well . . . Prices of wind, solar energy and storage technology are plummeting. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory reports that wind power cost just 2.5 cents per kilowatt hour (c/kWh) in 2014, with prices plunging further each year. Austin Energy inked a then-record low sub-4 c/kWh price for solar power last June, and Houston agreed to pay 4.8 c/kWh. EIA energy outlooks have missed these plunging prices even as other sections of the Department of Energy and the private sector report them. However, common sense can recognize that coal-laden trains from Wyoming, or even gas fracked from shale fields, will struggle to compete with direct-delivered breezes and sunshine as renewable technologies cheapen.

Cohan is associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at Rice University. Parks is co-author of “All-Electric America: A Climate Solution and the Hopeful Future” and associate editor of ElectricityPolicy.com and Electricity Daily.

Read the entire story here. 

White house raises $4 billion for clean energy

by Gregory Korte, USA TODAY

Photo: Nicholas Kamm, AFP/Getty Images

Photo: Nicholas Kamm, AFP/Getty Images

WASHINGTON — The White House is touting $4 billion in commitments from the private sector to invest in clean energy technologies as it convenes a Clean Energy Investment Summit Tuesday.

And the Obama administration is announcing new executive actions it hopes will make it easier for the private sector to invest in solar, wind and fuel cell technologies. The Treasury Department is releasing new guidance allowing charitable foundations to invest in for-profit companies doing clean energy research as a “mission-related investment.”

READ MORE.