Too green, too soon? Renewable power may destabilize electrical grid
Daily Finance Share
Only five years into the world's renewable energy push, many utility companies are so concerned about grid instability that they're saying they can't accept any more electricity from intermittent sources of power. Translation: Solar power only runs in the day time and can't re relied on for so called "baseload" capacity. Wind power primarily produces current at night and, likewise, can't be relied upon for baseload capacity. Geothermal, meanwhile, is perfect for providing baseload. But geothermal projects take an excruciatingly long time to build out. And then there have been the recent spate of earthquake scares around geothermal sites. The upshot: Utilities such as Hawaiian Electric are voicing concerns about plans to integrate more solar and wind power into the grid until they develop methods to more effectively absorb intermittent sources of power without destabilizing the whole shebang.
Residential Installer Bureaucracy and Administration Cost Survey
In an effort to help reduce the cost of solar installations, SEIA is collecting data on bureaucratic and other administrative costs faced by residential and small commercial installers. SEIA’s residential deployment working group has put together a survey designed to assess the size, scope and nature of costs directly associated with these issues. Answering this survey will help SEIA determine the average costs for residential installers to comply with various incentive application requirements, interconnection and net metering rules, and local permitting and inspections.
The survey is only for companies that install residential (<10 kW) solar PV and solar thermal systems, and should take less than 15 minutes to fill out. Completing this survey will help SEIA work to reduce the time and money your company spends on paperwork and permitting. The information collected will remain confidential and will only be reported in an aggregated fashion.
SEIA Residential Installer Survey
Clean energy movement stalled in Florida Legislature
The Miami Herald Share
In the last legislative session before his death, state Sen. Jim King tirelessly pushed for an energy compromise to reduce the amount of dirty fuel Florida uses to produce electricity. He called it "visionary'" and predicted it would spawn jobs in the growing alternative-fuel industry. It passed in the Senate, 37-1, but died in the House. More
Bell building concentrated solar plant with thermal storage system, first of its kind
Environmental Leader Share
Bell Independent Power Corporation is building a concentrated solar plant that will also store energy in the form of heat. Bell says the plant will be 50 percent more efficient than others. The plant will be the anchor tenant of the new Solar Zone at the The Tech Park in Tucson, Ariz. Bell, which is based in Rochester, NY, is building the five megawatt concentrated solar power plant with a thermal storage system, which it says will be the first in the world. More
Measure hastens adoption of solar
Baltimore Sun Share
Maryland is moving to require utility companies to accelerate their use of solar power, an idea rankling some lawmakers who are concerned that an impractical quota would needlessly raise the price consumers pay for electricity. A plan working through the General Assembly would push energy suppliers such as Baltimore Gas and Electric to rely on a higher percentage of solar power in the next few years than mandated by current law. The bill was approved Friday by the Senate and is moving through the House of Delegates. More
U.S. solar startup says sold out through 2010
U.S. solar startup Suniva Inc, which makes high-efficiency solar cells and modules, said it is sold out through 2010 and plans to triple exports over the next five years.
Peru signs contracts for solar energy
Peru's government has signed contracts with companies that are expected to invest $1 billion in wind, solar and hydroelectric energy projects. President Alan Garcia oversaw the signing of contracts with 26 companies that are to build three windmill parks, four solar power plants and 17 small hydroelectric plants.
In clean energy, U.S. innovates but builds slowly
CNet News Share
If you follow the money, the numbers show that the U.S. is being outpaced by China and other countries in a global race to develop green-technology industries. The Pew Charitable Trusts, in conjunction with Bloomberg New Energy Finance, is publishing a report on Thursday that characterizes different countries in developing and adopting clean-energy technologies.
U.S. health group to install solar energy
Renewable Energy Focus Share
A health care provider in California will install solar energy systems at 15 of its facilities in the state by next summer. Kaiser Permanente will have the solar energy systems installed by Recurrent Energy of San Francisco. Total capacity will be 15 MW, sufficient to supply 11,250 homes. Kaiser will spend $96 million over 20 years for the solar systems, which will provide 10 percent of the electricity used by facilities in California. It will retain all the Renewable Energy Credits (REC) for the solar projects, which will be cost-neutral. More
Thin film solar panels take a giant leap toward affordable renewable energy
Cooler Planet Share
Two drawbacks to solar power were cost and the bulk of the panels, but newer panels, called thin-film solar panels are lowering the cost of solar and allowing new types of solar panels to be made. Some are flexible and can either be rolled up or formed into roof tiles, so it’s hardly noticeable that you’re powering your home with the sun. More