Tag Archives: renewable energy jobs

Solar for All: How to incentivize community solar projects to benefit low-, middle-income customers

By Charles W. Thurston, Solar Builder Magazine

Community solar has taken off within the renewable energy development leagues, melding the interests of residential and commercial or industrial customers, as well as the local utilities. While the inclusion of low- and middle-income (LMI) residential customers are widely enabled by state legislation on community solar, specific carve-outs or percentage requirements for LMI customers are less common. At times, solar developers have focused heavily on anchor commercial or industrial customers and paid little attention to residential participation, much less the LMI segment.

To help remedy this practice of under-weighting LMI customers in community solar development, local housing authorities have stepped up to bring their resources — if not regulations — to bear, early in the planning process. Developers also have found that the housing authorities and other social institutions can be valuable partners in locating and enrolling customers in a project well ahead of ground-breaking. Read more here.

Photo: Geronimo Energy team celebrating another community solar install in Minnesota, which recently sold a 100-MW community solar portfolio in Minnesota to Berkshire Hathaway.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

The hottest job over the next decade is expected to be solar panel installer

By Jeff Cox, CNBC

  • The economy is projected to add 11.5 million jobs over the next decade, with the bulk in health care, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • In percentage terms, the biggest growth will come from solar panel installers at 105.3 percent — from 11,300 now to 23,200.
  • The projections come amid the slowest year for job growth since 2010, as the economy was still reeling from the financial crisis.

Read more here.

SEE ALSO: Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook: Solar Photovoltaic Installer

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

Major Utilities Buying More Wind as Economics Drive US Energy Transformation

By Chris Brown, Renewable Energy World

Across the nation, smart business leaders are doubling down on wind power because new business realities are driving an energy marketplace that is more diversified and flexible. Clean power sources, such as wind, solar and natural gas, are now customers’ preferred energy choices. And this new energy mix is actually improving America’s grid, adding resilience and reliability, along with more than half a million U.S. jobs, while saving U.S. energy customers and ratepayers billions of dollars in electricity costs.

Last Friday, we heard more good news. Reports on DOE’s draft grid study confirm what major utilities have been saying with their wallets: “The power system is more reliable today” and “significantly higher levels of renewable energy can be integrated without any compromise of system reliability.” Continue reading.

Local View: One good way to create American jobs

Editorial written by Lucas Sabalka, Lincoln Journal Star

We are in a time of tremendous change. As President Trump’s term begins, our country is faced with great challenges as well as great opportunities. At the top of the list of problems to tackle is creating good American jobs.

Inextricably linked with job creation and economic growth are the areas of energy and the environment. Continue reading.

Lucas Sabalka is an Applied Mathematician at Nebraska Global.


ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

Forum speakers tout benefits of renewable energy

Art Tanderup discusses the solar panels he uses to generate electricity at his Neligh-area farm during a renewable energy forum Thursday night in Norfolk. Since January, the panels have supplied 82.5 percent of the energy he’s used, which decreased his energy bill by 66 percent compared to the same time frame in 2014.

By Christina Lieffring, Columbus Telegram  

NORFOLK – The Nebraska Farmers Union organized a forum Thursday evening at Northeast Community College’s Lifelong Learning Center, where presenters discussed renewable energy’s impact on the economy, climate change and faith.

NECC’s dean of applied technology, Lyle Kathol, first presented on the opportunities for students and professionals with the development of wind energy in Nebraska. NECC offers the state’s only wind energy technology associate degree, a two-year program that trains students to work in construction or repair of wind turbines.

Read more here.

Available grant funding & incentives for renewable energy projects:

  • A USDA Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) grant, if awarded, would cover 25% of the project.
  • Federal Tax Credit of 30% for qualified installations
  • Accelerated depreciation for businesses
  • Self-Employment Tax Credit

The American Renewable Energy and Efficiency Act Introduced by Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Massachusetts)

Last week Massachusetts Democratic Senator Edward Markey introduced his first bill in the Senate, The American Renewable and Energy Efficiency Act, that would require utilities to generate a minimum of 25% of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2025.  A summary of the bill begins with these statements:

Overwhelming majorities of Americans from both parties and across the country want greater access to clean energy. And they want government policies that support greater deployment of these technologies

The American Renewable Energy and Efficiency Act would create huge benefits for consumers, create jobs, and protect the environment by requiring electric utilities to obtain a minimum of 25 percent of their electricity from renewable sources like wind, solar, hydro, geothermal, and biomass by 2025. The bill also requires electric and natural gas utilities to implement energy efficiency programs that would save the equivalent of 15 percent and 10 percent of sales, respectively, by 2025.

To continue reading this summary, click on this link:
http://www.markey.senate.gov/documents/2013-10-31_EERES_Summary.pdf

To read the entire bill, click here:
http://www.markey.senate.gov/documents/2013-10-31_MarkeyRESEERS.pdf

Markey Bill Creates Jobs, Quadruples America’s Clean Electricity Production –  You Tube Video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t7Mf2f8M4XM

The bill is supported by the following environmental and trade groups:

American Wind Energy Association, National Hydropower Association, Solar Energy Industry Association, American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, TechNet, New England Clean Energy Council, Natural Resources Defense Council, Union of Concerned Scientists, League of Conservation Voters, The Pew Charitable Trusts, Environment America, Sierra Club, The Wilderness Society, First Wind, Ameresco, National Wildlife Foundation, Conservation Law Foundation