Tag Archives: renewable energy news

The case for a U.S. federal green bank

Contributed Article by Ilmi Granoff, PV Magazine

In this post ClimateWorks makes the argument that whether you are looking to support innovation or deployment of existing clean energy solutions, a federal Green Bank would be a powerful tool for advancing the energy transition. Continue reading here.

Photo Credit: Flickr

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

FEATURED STUDY

10 Breakthrough Technologies Can Help Feed the World Without Destroying It, World Resources Institute. How can the world feed nearly 10 billion people by 2050 while also advancing economic development, protecting and restoring forests, and stabilizing the climate? It won’t be easy and will require major new efforts, but it can be done. Our new World Resources Report: Creating a Sustainable Food Future, co-issued by the World Bank, UN Environment Programme and UN Development Programme, recommends a menu of 22 solutions served over five courses:

The Global Energy Map Is Changing Faster Than You Think

By Enrique Dans, Contributor, Forbes

Renewable energy is already the cheapest and most logical way to produce energy without the need for subsidies. By introducing hydroelectric and geothermal energy into the equation, in addition to solar and wind energy, Costa Rica has already managed to go for 300 days in a row without burning fossil fuels to generate electricity. Portugal has managed four days with only renewable energy, the UK, a thousand hours without burning coal, while US states like Colorado are staggered at the cost competitiveness of renewables, even adding a diverse range of storage infrastructure. Within renewable energies, solar stands out for its increasingly lower costs. The goal of generating 100% of the world’s energy from renewable processes is becoming more feasible and cheaper every day. Read more here.

100% RENEWABLE ENERGY NEWS & RESOURCES

MORE RENEWABLE ENERGY NEWS

The $9 trillion dollar man

By John Weaver, PV Magazine

A presidential candidate is pushing $300 billion per year of U.S. government investment – with hopes to pull in a complementary $600 billion per year in private investment – to aim for $9 trillion in investment over the course of a decade. Sounds like a lot of money until we think about the United States subsidizing fossils to the tune of $649 billion a year, and estimates that the U.S. gross domestic product could fall by 10% – more than $2 trillion per year – due to costs associated with climate change. Jay Inslee has introduced his Evergreen Economy Plan as part of his presidential election campaign. The plan has five major planks that include many individual legislative actions. Read more here.

FEDERAL LEGISLATION

U.S. Green Bank Act of 2019 Would Provide $10 Billion+ of Capital to State and Local Green Banks, Coalition for Green Capital. The Green Bank Act of 2019 would inject billions of dollars into the U.S. economy to accelerate clean energy deployment, grow clean energy businesses, and deliver affordable clean energy to all Americans. The members of the global Green Bank Network and the American Green Bank Consortium have already shown that public investment in clean energy deployment drives greater total investment, job growth and lower energy costs. The bill creates a new USGB as a wholly owned corporation of the U.S. government, housed within Treasury. It would be capitalized through the issuance of federal Green Bonds.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

RESEARCH

GREEN BUILDING

Cambria Hotel Omaha Downtown: Cambria Hotels Celebrates Its First Hotel To Open In The Cornhusker State, Choice Hotels International Announcement. The LEED Silver Certified hotel incorporates a number of eco-friendly features throughout the building, including a solar array on the roof, a salt water pool that reduces chemical usage, Tesla and electric vehicle charging stations, and locally-sourced, recycled building materials.

Additional Nebraska LEED Certified Projects, US Green Building Council

More Utilities Make Big Commitments to Climate Action

By Sophia Ptacek and Sheryl Carter, Natural Resources Defense Council

Utility clean energy commitments have strengthened and multiplied since we inventoried some of the most newsworthy announcements last year. Xcel Energy recently became the first major utility to commit to eliminating 100 percent of its carbon emissions by 2050. Platte River Power Authority, a publicly owned utility in Colorado, announced its pledge to provide 100 percent carbon-free energy by 2030. And MidAmerican Energy, a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary, will be the first U.S. utility to provide customers with electricity generated from 100 percent renewable energy by 2020, less than a year away . . . Climate commitments keep coming. Read more here.

MORE ENERGY TRANSITION STORIES & BLOOMBERG’S NEW MOVEMENT ANNOUNCEMENT

NEW SLIDESHOW

WINDExchange Publishes New Offshore Wind Slideshow 
As part of its series of wind information slideshows, WINDExchange published Block Island and Beyond: Offshore Wind Energy in the United States. This slideshow provides a brief introduction to offshore wind in the United States, including the country’s first installation off the coast of Block Island, Rhode Island. The slideshow is also available as a PowerPoint file.

Pixabay Photo

North America’s Resilient Grid for Renewable Energy

By Gordon Feller, Transmission & Distribution World

A growing chorus of experts now believe that new grid infrastructure in North America must facilitate a
massive reduction of greenhouse gas emissions while, at the very same time, protecting the electrical
transmission system against natural and human made threats.

An ambitious project, The North American Supergrid (aka, NAS, or Supergrid), as proposed by the Washington DC-based nonprofit Climate Institute, aims to address this problem. Read more here.

 

Climate Institute Website
North American Supergrid


ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

Top Companies Embracing Clean Energy in 2019,
Business News Daily. The 2019 Q1 Carbon Clean list,
released by As You Sow, a nonprofit that promotes
environmental and social corporate responsibility,
showcases the world’s top-ranked “clean” companies based on their “total green energy revenue.”

CORPORATE RENEWABLE ENERGY BUYERS’ ALLIANCES

RE100: To date, 165 RE100 companies have made a commitment to go 100% renewable. Read about the actions they are taking and why here.

Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance (REBA) is a consortium dedicated to growing large buyers’ demand for renewable power and helping utilities and others to meet it.

RENEWABLE ENERGY AGGREGATION NEWS

RFP seeks renewable power from public entities in Texas,
Renewables Now 

By late April Texas Energy Aggregation (TEA) will be accepting proposals for wholesale renewable power to supply school districts, universities, state agencies and other public entities in the Lone Star State that want to get pooled access to low-cost green energy.

21 New York Universities Form Renewable Energy Purchasing Consortium, Clean Technica
21 public and private universities in the state of New York have banded together to create the New York Campuses’ Aggregate Renewable Energy Solutions consortium (NYCARES), which seeks to lower financial barriers to renewable energy procurement through combined purchases.

ELECTRIC TRANSPORTATION

 

Siemens to Supply Motors for Eviation’s All-Electric Airplanes,
Greentech Media. 
Startup Eviation Aircraft and Siemens will jointly develop propulsion systems for the Alice, a nine-passenger electric commuter plane.


A Q&A With Rivian, the Amazon-Backed Electric Truck Startup, Greentech Media
‘Alexa, charge my electric vehicle’ now an option for some EV owners, American Public Power Association

STEM CAREERS / EDUCATION

EPA Updates Key Tool for Communities to Use in Turning Current and Formerly Contaminated Lands into Renewable Energy Assets

EPA News Release

EPA’s RE-Powering Mapper is an online interactive web application that allows users to visualize key information on renewable energy potential at specific contaminated lands, landfills and mine sites. Using screening criteria developed in collaboration with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), EPA has pre-screened more than 130,000 sites for their renewable energy potential. Read more here.

Access the updated RE-Powering Mapper here. 
Learn more about EPA’s RE-Powering America’s Land Initiative here.

ALSO OF POTENTIAL INTEREST

The Nordex Group: leading sustainability transformation with powerful wind turbines, Energy Digital

Today, the Nordex Group has several projects underway and is nearing completion on a 95 turbine project in Kansas, a 101 turbine project in Nebraska, and a 16 turbine project in North Dakota.
AWEA Public Domain Photo: Wind Rainbow

  • Minnesota Power, Tenaska agree on wind energy purchase, The Globe
  • Black Hills Energy proposes $57 million wind farm for new energy options, Wyoming News
    The utility submitted a proposal to the Wyoming Public Service Commission on Monday seeking approval for a new Renewable Ready Service Tariff. The program would offer commercial customers local utility-scale renewable energy resources through a subscription program to fulfill up to 100 percent of their electricity needs. Participants would be able to enter into contracts with the company to purchase renewable energy for periods of five to 25 years. To facilitate this, Black Hills is requesting approval for a 40-megawatt wind energy-generating facility west of Cheyenne, known as the Corriedale Wind Energy Project.
  • The Year of the Corporate PPA, Greentech Media
  • Colorado’s Electric Car Dream: More charging stations, less smog and the warm embrace of renewable energy, The Denver Post. The state is growing more bullish on electric vehicles as it launches a plan to “electrify” more of the state’s transportation sector
  • The story behind that Amazon shareholder proposal demanding action on climate change, Fast Company. A group of employee stockholders have signed their names to a resolution, which will be voted on at the upcoming annual shareholder meeting next year. They are requesting that Amazon prepare a report describing exactly how it is planning for disruptions posed by climate change, and how it will reduce its dependence on fossil fuels. In total, 28 employees put their names on the document. It’s a first-of-its-kind stand from employees of one of the world’s most powerful companies–a group of dissenters using the leverage provided to them via their stock options. 

SHAREHOLDER ADVOCACY / CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY RESOURCES

As You Sow
Founded in 1992, As You Sow promotes environmental and social corporate responsibility through shareholder advocacy, coalition building, and innovative legal strategies. Their vision is a safe, just, and sustainable world in which protecting the environment and human rights is central to corporate decision making. “Corporations are responsible for most of the pressing social and environmental problems we face today — we believe corporations must be a willing part of the solutions.”

Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility
Currently celebrating their 47th year, the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR)
pioneered the use of shareholder advocacy to press companies on environmental, social, and governance issues. This coalition of over 300 global institutional investors currently represents more than $400 billion in managed assets. Leveraging their equity ownership in some of the world’s largest and most powerful companies, ICCR members regularly engage management to identify and mitigate social and environmental risks resulting from corporate operations and policies.

Proxy Preview
Proxy Preview is a collaboration between three organizations: As You Sow, Sustainable Investment Institute, and Proxy Impact to help investors align their values with their investments. Publishes Annual Guide: Proxy Preview 2018 is the 14th edition of the insider’s guide to social and environmental shareholder proposals. This free publication is the #1
resource for shareholders looking to align their values and investments. “Bible for socially progressive foundations, religious groups, pension funds, and tax-exempt organizations”
– Chicago Tribune

SocialFunds.com
Social Funds.com features over 10,000 pages of information on SRI mutual funds, community investments, corporate research, shareowner actions, and daily social investment news.

Here’s why more Wisconsin companies are adding rooftop solar energy panels

By Paul Gores, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

With the just-completed installation of almost 500 solar panels that could offset more than 61 percent of the anticipated energy use of the new building, Lakeland Supply is joining a growing number of Wisconsin companies that are opting to address their power needs with solar-generated electricity.

The most current data from the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin shows that between 2008 and the third quarter of 2017, the number of solar photovoltaic installations on commercial and industrial buildings in the state increased almost ninefold, to 1,030 from 118.
Read the entire article and view more photos here.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING

EV GROUP BUY PROGRAMS

Group Buy Programs Have Helped Sell Over 3,000 EVs, CleanTechnica

report on EV group buying programs was recently developed by Matt Frommer, the Southwest Energy Efficiency Project’s Transportation Program Senior Associate, in partnership with the Colorado Energy Office and Refuel Colorado. He also had assistance from Will Toor and Mike Salisbury.
Image by Zach Shahan, CleanTechnica


SOLAR WINDOW NEWS

Solar Window Technologies invests $25 million in manufacturing lines and hiring, PV Magazine. SolarWindow says its product has a one-year payback, and that a 50-story building facade – 360° covered – would be equivalent to approximately 10-12 acres (1-2 MW) of ground mounted solar power. Competitor Onyx Solar also suggests a less than one-year payback on its solar window product. Onyx also put out a nice PDF which breaks down solar glass efficiency versus visibility, and then gets into the costs of installation.

Coalition for Community Solar Access Launches Online Portal for Community Solar Jobs

News Release 


The Coalition for Community Solar Access, a national coalition of businesses and non-profits working to expand community solar, has launched a new Community Solar Job Portal. The portal features a wide variety of job openings from companies across the country and provides job seekers a single destination to find job opportunities in the fastest growing sector within the solar industry.

“Community solar is a high growth industry with lots of opportunity,” said CCSA Executive Director Jeffrey Cramer. “As the industry unlocks more gigawatts of community solar capacity in more states, companies are increasingly looking to hire smart, talented, and motivated people. We built this job portal to help companies find talent and to serve as a resource for those interested in landing a career in a fast-growing sector that positively impacts the community.”
Read more here.

ALSO IN THE NEWS

FEATURED SOLAR ENERGY INDUSTRY NEWS

CleanTechnica: What Changed In The EV Industry In September & October?

Jared Polis wants Colorado 100 percent powered by renewable energy, but talk is easier than the walk

By Mark Jaffe, Special to the Colorado Sun

Denver wants to do it, as do Fort Collins, Pueblo and Breckenridge. Aspen has already done it, and Colorado Gov.-elect Jared Polis wants the whole state to do it by 2040: run on 100 percent renewable energy. There is even a push by incoming congressional Democrats, led by U.S. Rep.-elect Alexandria Casio-Cortez, of New York, to set a national 100 percent renewable energy goal as part of a “Green New Deal.” U.S. Rep.-elect Joe Neguse, who will take Polis’ seat in the House, has signed on to the plan.  Read more here.

Xcel Energy Photo: Wind turbines in Limon, Colorado.

MORE NEWS FROM COLORADO & OTHER STATES

COST OF SOLAR POWER


ENERGY CONSERVATION

Deck the halls with energy savings

Wilbert: Wyoming’s future depends on moving away from coal

Casper Star Tribune Guest Opinion, by Connie Wilbert, a Laramie resident and the director of Sierra Club Wyoming Chapter

It’s time to transition our economy away from a coal industry in permanent decline and make sure that workers have a path forward as market forces move the world away from coal power. Why is it so important that state leaders make transition a priority? In recent weeks we’ve seen numerous examples of what happens when coal executives are left in charge.
Read more here.

Related

NEBRASKA EV NEWS
Preparing for the future of electric cars, KOLN, Lincoln

100% RENEWABLE ENERGY NEWS
Does your city want to go 100% Renewable Energy? Here’s how you can fund that, Red, Green, and Blue

ALSO OF POTENTIAL INTEREST

Smart Solar: 8 Surprising Uses of Solar Energy in 2018