Solar Energy News, Analysis, Education

Northern Cities Gaining in Solar Development
23 Apr 2017 at 4:52pm
by Rich Dana
American cities are embracing new, job-creating renewable energy technology, and not all of those cities are in the sunny Southwest. According to an analysis released recently by Environment America Research and Policy Center, solar power is booming nationwide. The top 20 cities for solar installed in America now have as much solar as the entire […]

Six Cities, Led by San Diego, Make California the Winner in Solar Survey
18 Apr 2017 at 7:32pm
by David Baldwin
A new report, prepared jointly by the nonprofit organizations Frontier Group and Environment America Research & Policy Center, has named six California cities among its Top 20 “Shining Cities.” These are the twenty cities that, according to the report’s survey, have the highest total installed solar PV capacity. Except for Texas – which can claim […]

The Kentucky Coal Museum is Powered by… Solar?!
10 Apr 2017 at 4:07am
by Rich Dana
The irony is not lost on the museum’s administrators, but the thousands of dollars in energy savings from the new solar array were too good pass up. The Kentucky Coal Mining Museum might seem like the last place in America that would go solar but the reality is, people who really understand the energy industry […]

Washington Argues Regulations. Meanwhile, Solar Grows.
3 Apr 2017 at 4:04pm
by Rich Dana
Last week, President Trump announced that he will sign an executive order rolling back “job-killing” regulations on “really-clean coal.” Meanwhile, solar jobs are booming. Regardless of your opinion of the President, he is making a serious attempt to make good on each and every one of his campaign promises. However, many of the “Make America […]

Solar Efficiency Increase: New Record Set
26 Mar 2017 at 8:49pm
by Rich Dana
Japanese researchers have surpassed the 2015 record for silicon solar panel efficiency, inching ever closer to maximum theoretical limits. This advancement will help to bring down the installed cost of solar even more in the near future. Using a technique called thin-film heterojunction (HJ) optimization, researchers at Japan’s Kaneko Corporation have achieved 26.6% efficiency, surpassing […]

Solar in the States: Midwest Update
20 Mar 2017 at 6:57pm
by Rich Dana
Across the U.S., states governments are struggling to craft laws that are fair for solar owners.At the same time, they are feeling the pressure from powerful utility industry lobbyists. In the first of an ongoing series of articles on state solar legislation, Solar Tribune focuses on solar news from around the American heartland. —- Solar […]

World’s Largest Lithium-Ion Storage Facility in San Diego County May Help Solar Power
13 Mar 2017 at 6:46pm
by David Baldwin
In Escondido, a city in San Diego County not far from San Diego itself, the utility SDG&E, in partnership with the Virginia-based company AES Energy Storage, recently unveiled a California milestone: the largest lithium-ion energy storage installation in the world. The 30 megawatt (MW) facility contains 400,000 AES Advancion® batteries, similar to ones found in […]

California Is Becoming the Solar/Storage Test Bed
13 Mar 2017 at 12:41am
by Rich Dana
California utilities are working hard to discourage new indie rooftop solar projects, but their upcoming changes in rate structures will simply accelerate the adoption of new storage technology. San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E), Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) and Southern California Edison (SCE) are all proposing new rate structures that will move on-peak rates […]

Rick Perry Confirmed as Secretary of Energy: Will He Stand Up for Solar?
6 Mar 2017 at 3:43pm
by Rich Dana
Former Texas governor and two-time republican presidential candidate Rick Perry was sworn in as chief of the Department of Energy (DOE) last week, and many in the solar industry are wondering what to expect from the new Energy Secretary when it comes to renewable energy policy. Perry suggested eliminating the DOE during his 2011 campaign […]

North Carolina Island Rolls Out Microgrid
26 Feb 2017 at 7:11pm
by Rich Dana
Ocracoke—a popular tourist destination in the Outer Banks of North Carolina— is addressing weather-related power outages with a state-of-the-art battery-based microgrid. According to the Ocracoke Observer,  a cooperative venture by the North Carolina Electric Membership Corporation (which owns the island’s 3-megawatt diesel generator) and Tideland Electric Membership Corporation (the local utility company) have installed a […]

California Solar + Storage Project Will Be A “Win-Win”
20 Feb 2017 at 8:00am
by Rich Dana
Enphase energy and GRID Alternatives have partnered in the past to bring clean, affordable solar energy to low-income homes in California. Now, with net-metering caps kicking in, they are adding storage to this successful program. Based in Oakland, California, GRID Alternatives is a non-profit organization that brings together community partners, volunteers and job trainees to […]

Jimmy Carter: The “Solar President”
13 Feb 2017 at 1:26am
by Rich Dana
In the late 1970s, the peanut farmer from Plains, Georgia became the first American president to promote solar as a path to American energy independence and freedom from foreign oil. Now, at 92, his family is turning 10 acres of the family peanut farm into a 1.3-megawatt solar farm. On February 8th, President Carter and […]


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