solar power

Renewable Texas: Lessons from the Lonestar State

Texas has the most wind power in the country and is rapidly building solar. How did that happen?

People are often surprised to learn that Texas is the national leader in wind power, with the twice the generating capacity of any other state.  On one notable night in December of 2015, the state got 45% of its power from wind, though the year-round average was only about 10%.  In July of this year, the …

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Is the Sun Finally Rising in the Southeast?

Slowly, and a bit grudgingly, the Old South is moving toward solar.

Southern states like to brag about their sunny weather.  Florida even calls itself the Sunshine State.  Yet the region lags well behind in terms of putting that sunshine to work. But it appears that change is coming.  Solar generating capacity in the Southeast is expected to nearly double over the next three years, though from …

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Climate and Energy on the East Coast

Renewable energy and climate action are big issues in NY and NJ.

New York and New Jersey are at the core of what people think about in terms of the “Northeast.”  Both are very active in promoting renewable energy — New Jersey despite Governor Chris Christie, New York in part because of Governor Cuomo. New York in particular seems ready to position itself as the East Coast …

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Will Renewable Energy Keep Getting Cheaper?

Technological and economic forces will continue to cut prices, regardless of Trump.

The Trump Administration is trying to save coal and stop the growth of renewables. Just this week Scott Pruitt issued a proposed repeal of Obama’s Clean Power Plan. Whether or not the repeal succeeds, Pruitt & Co. are  fighting against the economic tide.  If the price of renewables continues to fall, it will be harder …

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Is Texas Cleaning Up Its Act?

Carbon emissions are set in decline in Texas, with less coal and more renewables.

At a national meeting of state utility regulators, the head of the group recently said that the Clean Power Plan was basically dead, BUT this might not matter because “arguably, you’re seeing market-based decarbonization” due to technological changes.  Case in point: Texas. Market trends are pushing Republican-stronghold Texas toward a cleaner grid. ERCOT, which operates nearly all …

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A solar energy fight in Arizona

The rising political power of residential solar power

There’s a fight over renewable energy occurring in Arizona right now.  The state’s largest public utility asked state regulators for permission to greatly increase the fees paid by homeowners who have solar power on their houses.  The utility’s argument is that the increase in solar power produced by these houses is putting a burden on …

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Clear Views in the High Desert

If you are looking for a politically progressive city, Lancaster, California would not make it on your list.  Located in the deeply conservative Antelope Valley of north Los Angeles County, it has attracted attention by, inter alia, 1) electing Pete Knight, one of the most vicious anti-gay politicians in the country, to a series of state …

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Jump-Starting Clean Tech

A new report illuminates the role of the stimulus package in energizing Clean Tech.  Three of the four areas discussed in the report fall into this category; the fourth relates to medical research. 1. Modernizing transportation, including advanced vehicle technology and high-speed rail. Among other things, this includes $2 billion in advanced battery and electric …

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Gorbachev Goes Green

Matt Peterson’s blog reports: President Gorbachev, the founder of Green Cross International (Global Green USA is the American affiliate) . . .  said, “It’s not just a matter of rescuing the world’s economy — there is more at stake. We must not expect the outcome of this crisis will be the replicating of the same …

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Environmentalists v. Environmentalists: The Case of Alternative Energy

A shift to alternative forms of energy and away from conventional carbon-intensive fuels like coal forms the centerpiece of virtually all carbon-reducing strategies.  28 states have enacted mandatory renewable portfolio standards (RPS) (requiring their utilities to procure a set percentage of energy from alternative/renewable sources); the President’s stimulus package includes block grant money and tax …

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