By Gary Haynes, Lansing State Journal
Gary Haynes is a fifth generation Michigan farmer with fields in three counties, including Eaton County, which is considering whether solar panels will be allowed on farmland.
My family has farmed for five generations in mid-Michigan. Today I grow corn, wheat and soybeans in Eaton, Ingham and Jackson Counties. Like anyone in agriculture, I believe farmland should be preserved for the future and that we should do all we can to protect our air, land and water for future generations. In addition, we should seek opportunities to bring new jobs and new investment to rural communities throughout Michigan. Solar energy is one way to fulfill all of those goals. Right now, Eaton County is considering whether solar panels will be allowed on farmland in the county, and for multiple reasons, this is simply the right thing to do. First, solar energy and farmland preservation go hand in hand. Click here to continue reading.
Photo by Rob Davis, Fresh Energy
ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING
- Farmers harvest the sun’s energy and save, by Lura Roti, South Dakota Farmers Union, Farm Forum
- Two-sided green: Conservative group promotes renewable energy as good for business, LaCrosse Tribune
- Sunny Start to 2018 for American Solar Power, Inside Sources
- Solar ‘Incentives’ Are Busting Out All Over, Competitive Enterprise Institute
A new report by the Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA) examines solar power incentive programs in 25 states. The report considers five categories of “direct” incentives: federal tax incentives, state tax credits, state rebates, utility programs (such as net metering), and Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs). Amazingly, in eight states (Massachusetts, California, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Arizona, New Hampshire, and Minnesota), incentives exceed 100 percent of the costs of installing solar PV systems.
- Nebraska Incentives: Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE)
- Iowa Incentives: Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE)
- GOP Lawmaker, Conservative Groups Express Interest In Renewable Energy Businesses:
State Senator Talks Economic Development At MREA, Wisconsin Public Radio
- Driving on sunshine at the MREA’s annual energy fair, WSAW
- Madison College installs state’s largest rooftop solar energy project, WMTV
- Mendocino College board votes to move forward with Solar Power Purchase Agreement, Ukiah Daily Journal
- Updated: New US Solar Record — 2.155 Cents Per kWh! (with Escalator for Inflation), CleanTechnica. Notably, not even 5 years ago, 2–3¢/kWh solar was projected for 2050. Nevada Power is owned by Berkshire Hathaway, a Warren Buffet company.
- German company to build 100 MW solar project in Texas, San Antonio Express News
- AT&T Expands its Renewable Energy Program with NextEra Energy Resources, PR Newswire
- Samsung Plans to Use 100% Renewable Energy by 2020, Fortune
- Consumers Energy to file plan for no coal, 43% renewables, Utility Dive
Consumers Energy announced Wednesday that it will soon file a long-term plan with Michigan regulators that calls for shuttering the Karn coal-fired power plant in 2023, eliminating coal use and more than tripling renewable energy utilization in just over a decade.
- Massachusetts Senate passes bill that would eliminate caps on net metering, increase RPS, Solar Power World
- Solar Industry Welcomes Mass. Senate’s Passage of Clean Energy Bill, Urges State House to Follow, Vote for More Solar Jobs, Investment, SEIA Press Release
- G6 backs a carbon price and “just transition,” but Trump isolates U.S. further on climate, trade, by Mark Conway, Iowa City Climate Advocates, Iowa City Press-Citizen