There were early days in solar when news of secured financing for a commercial project yielded an exuberant round of high-fives in the office, and maybe you’d quit early for a round of beers. In 2008, PPA’s opened-up possibilities, and multiple variances on leases showed promise in what was still a slower-paced market with higher...
20,000 miles travelled, three speeches given, 11,000 attendees mingled with, dozens of interesting industry people met and a small dash of jetlag. We’ve just come back from Asian Utility Week 2019 with our heads full of insights from the many people we spoke with. An Energy Sector at tipping Point As the Asian economy continues...
California’s energy storage incentive program has been a great success, with more than 11,000 battery storage systems installed to-date. The problem is, it’s not reaching the state’s most vulnerable communities. A new proposal from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) aims to fix some of the barriers preventing disadvantaged communities from participating in the program, and it allocates $100 million to a new program designed to offset the cost of battery storage systems for populations threatened by wildfires and related utility power shutoffs.
Consumers, stakeholders and employees all demand that businesses operate in a sustainable manner, and in response corporations must adopt clean energy practices. Businesses have responded to this shift in various ways, with renewable energy integration at the forefront of sustainable investments even helping drive market development. In fact, corporate renewable energy procurement reached a new record in 2018, with 3.57 gigawatts (GW) of clean energy projects announced this year to date in the United States. Driven by various motivators - from the potential for energy savings, the creation of diverse business strategies, and a desire to reduce greenhouse emissions - incorporating renewables into an energy strategy presents organizations with the opportunity to increase cost efficiency and reliability, while reducing their environmental impact.
Even with established energy efficiency measures put in place, along with a growing number of customer owned distributed, small-scale renewable energy projects such as residential and commercial solar rooftop systems, electricity demand continues to rise in certain global markets. Over the past few decades, the emergence of new technologies such as cellular and smart phones, laptops, tablets and smart home devices, coupled with decreasing cost and financing solutions of household appliances and entertainment products, are putting upward pressure on electricity demand. Fundamentally, as a society, we are becoming more mobile and more connected to each other than ever before, which is a long-term trend that is unlikely to reverse itself.
From the deserts of Nevada to the hollers of West Virginia, and everywhere in between, Americans love our solar. Survey after survey shows that solar energy is supported by large majorities of Americans from across the political spectrum. A 2018 Pew Research Center poll once again put the number at nearly 9 out of 10 U.S. adults who favor increasing the amount of solar energy powering our country. Solar is one thing that unites us even in this divided time. And we’ve seen that solar supporters coming together can take on powerful opponents, and win.
Four years have passed since ILSR’s initial report on utility-owned rooftop solar and this 2019 update shows small growth but some potentially large repercussions. This update rehashes the costs and benefits, updates the progress of the four initial programs, highlights a few new programs, and discusses the wider implications.
As global populations continue to leave rural settings to flock to metropolitan centers, it has become increasingly clear that urban planners must focus on the development of sustainable communities, including the use of energy-efficient, clean energy technologies and zero-emission transportation. One of the primary goals being put in place by cities around the world is the reduction of emissions in heavily populated urban areas. It is not feasible to continue to develop mega-cities without the development of a sustainability roadmap.
What gives the suburbs of Philadelphia an edge over the central city in making commitments to 100% renewable energy?
Over the last days there have been numerous reports in the news about Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) announcing planned power shutdowns. In the event of hot, dry and windy conditions that can precipitate devastating fires, PG&E is electing to preemptively shut off electricity in power lines running through areas at high risk to avoid wildfires. Once a shutdown has been implemented, PG&E must wait until extreme weather has passed and the power lines have been visually inspected before restoring electricity.