Solar

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Investment in solar beats fossil fuels for job creation (And we’ll need 1 million more solar jobs over the next 15 years)

Back in May when most of the nation’s attention was focused on what appeared to be light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel, the Solar Foundation published its 11th annual census of jobs in the solar field during 2020. Because of the pandemic, the solar workforce fell by 6.7% to 231,474 workers last year. […]

October 28th

Climate-friendly investments like solar and wind can create more jobs per dollar than polluting alternatives

The coronavirus pandemic has been the biggest disruption to the global labor force in generations. It’s also exacerbated inequality. Global unemployment was equivalent to 127 million full-time jobs in the second quarter of 2021. The number of people who do have jobs but are living in poverty has increased – undoing five years of progress. While in some countries […]

October 22nd

Solar panels on half the world’s roofs could meet its entire electricity demand

Rooftop solar panels are up to 79% cheaper than they were in 2010. These plummeting costs have made rooftop solar photovoltaics even more attractive to households and businesses who want to reduce their reliance on electricity grids while reducing their carbon footprints. By Siddharth Joshi, University College Cork; James Glynn, Columbia University, and Shivika Mittal, […]

October 19th

CCL: Faster transitions to clean energy are also cheaper

Several clean energy technologies like solar panels have become consistently cheaper year after year as the industries have benefited from learning, experience and economies of scale. Falling solar costs are described by “Swanson’s Law,” much like Moore’s Law described the rapid and consistent progress in the semiconductor industry. Solar photovoltaic cells in 2019 cost about 85% less per watt […]

Utilities continue to slow-walk solar connection to the grid (conflict of interest much?)

As regulated monopolies, though they own and operate the distribution grid, utility companies must follow the rules set for them and guarantee customers certain rights. In Minnesota, and in any state with net metering policy, customers have the right to build rooftop solar and connect it to the distribution grid. Minnesota also has a community solar policy, […]

October 6th

Who pays and who benefits from a massive expansion of solar power?

Electricity generation produces a quarter of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions that drive climate change. The electric grid also is highly vulnerable to climate change effects, such as more frequent and severe droughts, hurricanes and other extreme weather events. By Felix Mormann, Texas A&M University The Conversation For both of these reasons, the power sector is […]

October 4th

Rooftops solar panels survive, thrive after Hurricane Ida

Hurricane Ida shut down all of Entergy’s electricity transmission into New Orleans and left hundreds of thousands across the region to suffer a week — or longer — in the heat and darkness. But rooftop solar panels made the blackout caused by Entergy’s failures after Ida bearable. By Nathan Kuaffman Nexus Media News While not […]

September 18th

Biden’s 45% solar target would SAVE the US $1 trillion, so of course lying deniers say that’s the COST

On Wednesday, hours after the Department of Energy released a report detailing how solar power can meet 45% of the country’s energy needs by 2050, Isaac Orr at the Center for the American Experiment scrambled to churn out one of the first, and worst, estimates of how much it would cost. He then misrepresented the DOE report […]

September 13th

Solar energy could provide 40% of US electricity within 15 years

Solar energy can rise from 3% of U.S. power generation today to 40% by 2035, and ultimately 50% by 2050, a new report from the Energy Department and National Renewable Energy Laboratory shows. By Nathan Kaufman Nexus Media News Falling costs have boosted solar growth over the past decade, so reaching that 40% threshold would […]

September 10th

Climate groups welcome Biden solar blueprint (But urge quicker energy transition)

While welcoming the Biden administration’s new blueprint showing how solar energy could produce nearly half of U.S. electricity by 2050, climate campaigners on Wednesday also pointed to damage from recent fires and floods as evidence of the need for more rapid and sweeping systemic reforms. By Jessica Corbett Common Dreams The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) […]

September 9th

Grids can host the most solar after detailed analysis — Episode 135 of Local Energy Rules

Electricity customers are lining up to generate their own clean, affordable solar energy, but to get it to them, solar developers must navigate the impediments of a congested and outdated electricity grid. By Maria McCoy Institute for Local Self-Reliance For this episode of the Local Energy Rules podcast, host John Farrell speaks with Yochi Zakai, attorney with […]

July 30th

How climate action can reboot economies in rural America

Many rural counties in the United States face the dual challenges of lagging economic growth and increasingly severe effects of climate change. While urban areas are not uniformly prosperous and rural areas are not uniformly poor, rural communities on average lag behind their urban counterparts on most key economic indicators — from poverty rates to […]

July 22nd

Jobs in renewable energy fared better than other sectors in 2020

Employment in renewable energy and battery-related sectors was far more resilient to the shock of the novel coronavirus pandemic, according to an annual DOE report released Monday. Overall, one in 10 U.S. energy workers lost their jobs in 2020, with oil and gas workers hit hardest despite billions in bailouts and substantial payouts to executives. […]

July 21st

Oregon’s Community Solar Program

In 2016, Oregon passed SB 1547, the Clean Electricity and Coal Transition Act, which raised the Renewable Portfolio Standard and made solar accessible to homeowners, renters, schools, businesses, and governments through community net metering. The community solar program’s maximum capacity is set at two and a half percent of each utility’s 2016 system peak, enabling an […]

July 18th

The US set a record for renewables in 2020, but more is needed

Despite the challenging economic conditions created by COVID-19, 2020 was a record year for clean energy development in the United States, with the country nearly doubling the capacity installed in 2019. By Katrina McLaughlin and Lori Bird World Resources Institute According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, the U.S. installed 35 gigawatts (GW) of new renewable generating capacity in 2020, enough […]

June 17th