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Midwest Utilities Contemplate a Future Less Reliant on Coal

By Emma Foehringer Merchant, Greentech Media

The Midwest has long been a wind energy hub. Now, an increasing number of the region’s utilities are turning away from baseload coal and contemplating a future that relies heavily on clean energy. Utilities in states such as Iowa, Kansas, Wisconsin and Michigan have recently announced goals to pivot towards cleaner resources. In Kansas, newly-joined Westar Energy and Great Plains Energy (also known as Kansas City Power & Light) — now collectively known as Evergy — laid out a plan to retire a handful of old coal plants this fall and begin cleanup of the leftover coal ash. An executive of the company, John Bridson, told the area’s NPR affiliate that “it’s time to retire older, less-efficient fossil fuel plants.” Continue reading here.

Photo Credit: U.S. Department of Energy

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Solar Energy Making Ultra-Green Homes of the Future a Modern Day Reality

Zero-net energy Greenbuild Unity Home featuring fully-integrated SunPower home solar solution. Photo Credit: SunPower

Zero-net energy Greenbuild Unity Home featuring fully-integrated SunPower home solar solution. Photo Credit: SunPower

SAN JOSE, CALIF. / PR Newswire – Energy-efficient homes of the future have arrived and are growing in popularity. According to a report by McGraw Hill Construction, nearly one-third of new single-family homes in the U.S. will be green by 2016. They are energy and natural resource efficient, designed to reduce overall impact on human health and the environment. An increased number of consumers are going a step further and striving for net-zero energy homes that use renewable energy solutions, such as solar power systems, to offset all or most of their energy consumption. Across the country, the number of net-zero energy residential and commercial buildings doubled between 2012 and 2014 as cited by the New Buildings Institute.

Experts predict the trend will continue.

Continue reading.