Baseload, Bioenergy, Blogs, Geothermal, Grid Scale, Hydropower, Solar, Storage, Wind Power

From Energy Storage To Sustainable Living, RenewableEnergyWorld.com’s Top 10 Blogs of 2015

As we close out 2015, the editors of RenewableEnergyWorld.com would like to send a big Thank You to our blogging community. Year after year, bloggers contribute content that is filled with valuable insights, up-to-date news, innovative project highlights and cool new technology updates. RenewableEnergyWorld.com bloggers are truly a crucial part of our website.

Long-time bloggers know that we changed our platform this year in an effort to make blogging easier for our community. Unfortunately, we made things a bit more complicated but we would like you all to know that our team is working hard to smooth out the kinks so we can continue to serve as the world’s largest renewable energy network.

If you have some ideas or news you’d like to share with the Renewable Energy World community, we encourage you to start your own RenewableEnergyWorld.com blog. All you have to do is click the little blue register link on the top right-hand side of this page and then request blogging permission. Once permission has been granted, you are on your way!

The following pages highlight the top 10 blogs of 2015. Start posting today, and perhaps you’ll see one of your own blogs on this list next year. 

No. 10

Solar marketing guru, Tor “Solar Fred” Valenza, explained how solar companies should view the marketing power behind Tesla’s battery launch.

Harnessing the #ElonEffect: Deconstructing the PR Success of Tesla’s Battery Launch

Tor ‘Solar Fred’ Valenza
May 7, 2015

As most of the world has heard by now, Tesla and its co-founder, Elon Musk, launched Tesla Energy and its new battery system for homes and businesses. The event received international coverage from the media, social media, and the general public, so despite some last minute technical glitches, there’s no question that this launch was an absolute success. Full article.

No. 9

Tesla made the news in more ways than one on RenewableEnergyWorld.com. Chris Blevins offers some excellent tips for solar installers in this blog.

Elon Musk’s Gigafactory Should Be Dictating Your Solar Equipment

Chris Blevins

Oct 29, 2015

All solar installations today should be thinking ahead to the not-so-distant future. The main question to be asking is whether your solar system will seamlessly integrate with a battery. Most solar systems installed today will not. And although battery backup may not be on your radar at all, it should be, and not for the reason you’re thinking.  Full Article.

No. 8

The net-metering debate got very heated in 2015 and is expected to ramp up even more in 2016. Here is longtime blogger John Farrell’s take on why utilities and solar advocates just can’t get along.

5 Reasons Utilities Are Hating on Their Solar-Producing Customers

John Farrell

Aug 24, 2015

It seems crazy that electric companies would have anything against customers that spend their own money to reduce their energy use with clean, local solar power. But any number of utilities are slapping excessive fees and charges on customers with solar to slow or stop them. Here’s 5 reasons why. Full Article.

No 7.

Noah Horowitz’s tips on how to use less energy in our everyday lives was a popular blog in 2015.

9 Easy Earth Day Tips You Won’t Find Anywhere Else

Noah Horowitz

Apr 17, 2015

You don’t have to buy a hybrid car or install solar panels to make changes that have a significant environmental benefit, save money, and are easy to do. Here’s a list of 9 Earth Day tips you probably won’t find anywhere else. Altogether they could put several hundred dollars back in your pocket due to lower utility bills while preventing around a ton of climate change pollution. Full Article.

No. 6

Tom DeRosa argues that no one should be building new nuclear plants anymore.

Renewables vs. Nuclear: Do We Need More Nuclear Power?

Tom DeRosa

Apr 28, 2015

For at least the next 10 years, when considering new capacity, there should be little doubt that renewables will be the generation method of choice. Utility PV, solar thermal (especially with molten salt storage as a baseload source), wind, rooftop solar and biomass will be the highlights, along with contributions from biogas (sewage, landfills and livestock), geothermal, and maybe even some wave and tidal. Advances in storage technologies and reductions in price will help remove the intermittency concerns of some renewables. The next ten years should be another decade of rapid growth. Full Article.

No. 5

Energy expert Tim Hennessy explains how to value energy storage systems and why some people are failing to recognize its full potential.

Calculating the True Cost of Energy Storage

Tim Hennessy

Jan 12, 2015

When evaluating whether and what type of storage system they should install, many customers only look at the initial cost of the system — the first cost or cost per kilowatt-hour (kWh). Such thinking fails to account for other factors that impact overall system cost, known as the levelized cost of energy (LCOE), which factors in the system’s useful life, operating and maintenance costs, round-trip efficiency, and residual value. Full Article.

No. 4

Attorney Benjamin Falber give readers an excellent primer on the energy storage technologies in use today and those that are coming down the pike.

The Future of Energy Storage and the Rise of Big Batteries

Benjamin Falber

Apr 23, 2015

When examining the machine that is our electric grid, a compelling fact is that we are relatively unable to store electric energy. We must create as much as we consume, and can only consume as fast as we create. One issue that comes up in the renewable space when meditating on this relentless and necessary cycle is that renewable energy is intermittent. That is, we can generate it when the sun is shining or when the wind is blowing, but it cannot be captured and saved on a large scale. Full Article.

No. 3

As we struggle to learn how to live more sustainably, Sarah Lozanova offers us a model we can aspire to.

Net Zero Living in an Ultra Energy Efficient Home

Sarah Lozanova

Jan 15, 2015

Freedom from fluctuating energy prices, greater energy independence and eco-friendly living are alluring concepts that motivated my family to examine our housing and our lifestyle. We recently purchased an ultra-energy efficient home and installed a photovoltaic solar system, making our home net zero. Our solar system now produces as much power as we use over the course of a year. Full Article.

No. 2

Huge projects are highlighted in this great piece by Terri Engels.

Five Landmark Renewable Energy Projects from Around the World

Terri Engels

Feb 5, 2015

Several enormous renewable energy infrastructure projects — the kind that kick-start revolutions — have been completed over the last few years. 

They may have their difficulties, and they may not be the perfect model for the future, but at the very least they serve as a reminder that some corners of money, power and influence are fighting the good fight — even if they make a couple mistakes along the way. Full Article.

No. 1

Everyone loves a trend story and we have them coming for 2016. Review what we had our eyes on for 2015 in this post from Michael Kanellos.

Six Renewable Energy Trends to Watch in 2015

Michael Kanellos

Jan 5, 2015

2014 was a solid twelve months, for the most part, for renewable technologies. Solar firmly solidified its role as a major source of power in the future, LED sales continued to climb and investors began to more seriously look how efficiency gains can be measured and hence monetized in large commercial buildings. Meanwhile, large utilities began to question the long-term value of coal-burning power plants, a slide in oil prices gave investors the willies and nuclear advocates saw their once-theorized Renaissance get pushed out again. Full Article.

Lead image: Top Stories. Credit: Shutterstock.