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Green Business

Solar's Value for Grid Circuits: Not Much on Average, but Huge for a Handful

July 1, 2015 by Jeff St. John

Solar and the Grid

Solar advocates and opponents have argued over the merits of various studies about the relative costs and benefits of distributed solar PV. Different studies have reached different results -- so different that the Rocky Mountain Institute wrote an entire report just to compare and contrast 16 of them.[read more]

Residential PACE on the Rise; Innovative Solar Financing

July 1, 2015 by Dan Scripps

Residential PACE Financing

In 2010, the Federal Housing Finance Authority almost killed Property Assessed Clean Energy Programs (PACE) for residential properties. A lot can happen in five years, and what was once a program on the verge of foreclosure is now a booming market.[read more]

Public Investment in Clean Energy ''Poised for Exponential Growth'

June 30, 2015 by Katherine Tweed

Green Investment

Even without access to MLPs, which are publicly traded entities that are allowed to act like traditional corporations in the eyes of the Internal Revenue Service, financing vehicles for clean energy projects are already being unleashed. Investment in clean energy hit nearly $340 billion in 2014.[read more]

Don't Write Off Energy Efficiency, It's Just About to have its Day.

June 30, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange

The Advent of Energy Efficiency

Economists from the University of Chicago and the University of California, Berkeley released a study that called into question the cost-effectiveness of energy efficiency. The study was based on the team’s analysis of energy savings shortfalls in the Michigan low income Weatherization Assistance Program.[read more]

North Carolina Solar Leadership at the Crossroads

June 30, 2015 by NRDC Switchboard
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Solar in the States

As a North Carolinian, I can tell you it's pretty darned amazing that, last year, our state was number 2 in the nation in installed solar capacity. And number 4 in the first quarter of 2015, despite what can only be described as some really crappy (and construction-slowing) winter weather.[read more]

Solar Star, Largest PV Power Plant in the World, Now Operational

June 25, 2015 by Eric Wesoff

Solar Star PV Plant

BHE Renewables' 579-megawatt solar project located in in Antelope Valley, California is now fully connected to the California ISO grid. That allows the facility, dubbed "Solar Star," to claim the title of the largest operational solar project on the planet.[read more]

Wind and Solar Will Soon Become the 'Least-Cost Option Almost Universally'

June 24, 2015 by Stephen Lacey
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Wind and Solar Costs

Two new reports on global demand for renewables forecast dramatic growth in nearly every region of the world over the coming decades. While promotion policies are still important for supporting the industry, conventional technologies like wind and solar are becoming cheap enough to compete without subsidies.[read more]

How Should Distributed Generation be Distributed?

June 23, 2015 by Meredith Fowlie

Distributed Generation Planning

In the U.S., residential solar PV installations last quarter were up 11% over the previous quarter: In those states where residential solar is taking hold, there are mounting concerns that rate structures currently in place to support residential PV will result in adopters bearing less than their fair share of system costs.[read more]

Economics of Installing Combined Heating and Power Systems

June 23, 2015 by Merrill Kramer
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Combined Heat and Power Systems

With states adopting programs to encourage energy users to install combined heating and power (CHP) systems, building owners and asset managers are asking themselves the bottom line question – how can CHP increase my operating income and asset value?[read more]

Opening the Small Commercial Solar Market

June 22, 2015 by Elias Hinckley

Small Scale Solar Market/shutterstock

While the solar market has been exploding over the past few years, the small commercial segment of the market, made up of locations like apartment buildings, office buildings, small businesses, factories, warehouses, and hospitals, has been extraordinarily slow to develop.[read more]

The Grid is Getting Smarter, but are Customers Keeping Up?

June 22, 2015 by Jared Anderson

Smart Grid Adoption Delays?

Price signals are the key to altering actual customer behavior with regard to energy consumption, but something as simple as a smart meter alone may not be enough to advance many of the lofty goals promised by the smart grid or microgrids.[read more]

The First Energy Revolution: Tesla Energy Changes Everything

June 17, 2015 by Ken Trough
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Has Tesla Changed the Energy Industry

Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk recently introduced Tesla Energy, a suite of stationary battery products designed to help wean the world off fossil fuels. While a battery introduction may not seem like a world-changing event to many, it actually heralds the beginning of the First Energy Revolution.[read more]

What's a Bigger Business in Florida: Clean Energy or Ag Exports?

June 15, 2015 by Jim Pierobon
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Florida Energy and State Economics

If one were to ask what industry in Florida harbors the strongest growth prospects, it might be difficult to look beyond the state's bountiful agricultural products. But energy users and policymakers in the Sunshine State, led by Governor Rick Scott, should wake up to how fast clean energy is growing there.[read more]

The Energy Gang: New York Energy Czar on Philosophy Behind State's Energy Transformation [PODCAST]

June 15, 2015 by Stephen Lacey

Richard Kauffman has a lot of responsibilities as New York's "energy czar." He oversees multiple agencies and utilities, advises the governor on energy issues, and works closely with regulators in their attempt to build a new electricity market based on distributed resources.[read more]

On Pragmatic Conservation

There is a debate among conservationists over the future of protected areas. On one side are groups that do things like work with countries to site hydroelectric dams so they are less destructive. Then there's groups like the Center for Biological Diversity that sue governments to protect endangered species.[read more]