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Renewable Energy News

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Updated: 1 hour 19 min ago

Solar Equipment Supplier GT Advanced Technologies Files for Chapter 11

Mon, 10/06/2014 - 12:09

New Hampshire-based GT Advanced Technologies filed for Chapter 11 restructuring, the company said in a statement today.

China's Solar Industry Continues Rebound

Mon, 10/06/2014 - 09:16

Just months after tapping financial markets for nearly $250 million, solar panel maker Trina (NYSE: TSL) has just announced another plan to raise a similar amount as it tries to take advantage of improving sentiment towards its sector. Such fund-raising would have been unthinkable as recently as a year ago, when recovery of the solar panel sector w

Are UK Renewable Energy Contracts Hurting Consumers?

Mon, 10/06/2014 - 08:46

The U.K. government didn’t get the best deal for consumers when it awarded 16.6 billion pounds ($26.8 billion) worth of clean-energy contracts, according to a parliamentary committee.

EU Seeks Faster Renewable Energy Integration Amid Crisis in Ukraine

Mon, 10/06/2014 - 08:34

The European Union is seeking to speed up the creation of a common energy market to help its shift to a low-carbon economy and boost security of energy supplies amid a natural-gas dispute between Russia and Ukraine.

3 Reasons Why Renewable Energy Is The Prudent Choice for Your Business

Mon, 10/06/2014 - 07:40

Renewable Energy is still something that many UK businesses dismiss as an issue that only really concerns domestic customers, but could this be a worrying misconception? Love Energy Savings’ Charles Whitworth takes a look at three key reasons why utilising renewable energy methods at your place of work could be a no-brainer for all involved! Here a

Hydropower Financing Gets a Boost from the US Department of Energy

Mon, 10/06/2014 - 07:02

At 3.79 million square miles, the United States is the fourth largest country in the world by total area. Scattered throughout that vast landscape are some 80,000 non-powered dams that, if harnessed, could hold as much as 12.1GW (or 12,100MW) of renewable energy capacity. The U.S. Department of Energy recognizes this, and recently announced its intention to provide billions of dollars in loans to hydroelectric power technology developers to convert all that standing water into power.

White Lists: A Proactive Approach to Risk Reduction for the Bioenergy Industry

Fri, 10/03/2014 - 06:49

Cultivation of bioenergy crops is predicted to increase to between 27 and 120 million acres by 2022 in order to meet the renewable energy needs of the U.S. and the Environmental Protection Agency’s Renewable Fuel Standard. These crops may be used for production of ethanol, biodiesel or heat through combustion. Ideally, these renewable energy sources would neither compete with food production nor require land with high natural values or agricultural productivity. While early progress on meeting the Standard was based on corn and soybeans, there is increasing concern about the conversion of vast areas from food to fuel crop cultivation.

7 Renewable Energy Lessons from Germany

Fri, 10/03/2014 - 06:30

On the occasion of Germany’s re-unification day, I thought it would be fitting to review some of the lessons I learned from Germany about renewable energy on a recent trip to the country.  It would be hard to argue that Germany is NOT the renewable energy capital of the world in terms of developing a thriving industry that contributed more than 27

A Deeper Look into Yieldco Structuring

Fri, 10/03/2014 - 06:02

Yieldcos seem to be the renewable energy financing mechanism in vogue lately. As the newest 2014 headliners, TerraForm Power and NextEra Energy attract media attention, and NRG Yield continues to exceed expectations, many industry stakeholders are asking: what is a yieldco and why is it attractive from an investment and finance perspective? To answer these questions, this article summarizes key elements of the yieldco structure and provides an overview of the current U.S. market.

The Six Principles of Distributed Solar Policy and Rate Design

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 15:37

With distributed solar generation (DSG) and energy efficiency applications becoming more accessible and affordable, we are seeing an increased adoption of technologies that manage and reduce customers’ use of electricity from the grid. States nationwide are grappling with what this new energy paradigm means for utility regulation and rate design.

Will Lithium Ion Work for Grid-Scale Storage?

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 08:23

Lithium batteries have revolutionized consumer electronics and made EVs a mainstream reality. But will they play a similar role in energy storage? That was one of the most prominent questions at Energy Storage North America, the second annual conference taking place this week in San Jose. “Lithium ion was not fundamentally designed for grid scale s

China Solar Funds Boost Global Clean Energy Spending to $175 Billion

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 08:07

About $175 billion was spent globally on renewable energy projects during the first three quarters, up 16 percent from the same period last year, with Chinese solar investment at a record, according to a Bloomberg New Energy Finance report.

Is Distributed Energy Storage the Energiewende’s Missing Link?

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 07:43

For years, critics of the Energiewende, Germany’s clean-energy transition, have carped that the country’s power system cannot be based on intermittent generation sources — namely onshore wind and solar PV — without advanced storage technology to balance supply and demand. In Germany, battery storage has come a long way fast, and a year ago the German government started the first-ever subsidy program to support storage systems for homes, businesses, and public institutions, like schools. Yet the program has been slow to catch on, and observers maintain that its long-term impact on the Energiewende as such will be minimal.

U.S. Energy Department Approves Transmission Line to Deliver Quebec Hydropower to New York

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 12:05

The U.S. Department of Energy issued a presidential permit approving construction and operation of a 1,000-MW transmission line to carry Quebec hydroelectric power to customers in New York City.

How to Make a “Perfect” Solar Absorber

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 09:29

The key to creating a material that would be ideal for converting solar energy to heat is tuning the material’s spectrum of absorption just right: It should absorb virtually all wavelengths of light that reach Earth’s surface from the sun — but not much of the rest of the spectrum, since that would increase the energy that is reradiated by the material, and thus lost to the conversion process.

A Bounty of Shared Solar

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 07:35

I always enjoy learning obscure terms for collective nouns (a convocation of eagles, a bloat of hippopotamuses) so I wonder if we could coin a good term for a collection of shared solar programs? A ‘bounty’ perhaps? Whatever we call it, the collection of programs continues to grow year after year. If you’ve been following IREC for some time, you ma

German Renewables Output Tops Lignite

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 06:32

Renewables became Germany’s most important power source for the first time this year, according to Agora Energiewende.

Listen Up: Cap and Trade's Impact on Fuel Prices

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 06:14

Over 95 percent of climate scientists have concluded that CO2 is the primary cause of global warming. Solving the problem requires a dramatic reduction in CO2 emissions. Some people are altruistic, but almost all businesses are bottom line oriented and will not reduce their CO2 emissions unless they have an economic incentive to do so. There are two realistic incentives: taxing CO2 emissions or setting up a cap and trade program for CO2. Since increasing taxes is politically unfeasible, the most practical approach is with a cap and trade program.

Renewable Gas from Wastewater Treatment Plant Fueling UK Homes

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 05:00

Extracting energy from “processed poo” to help power homes in the Birmingham area is what Severn Trent Plc, Britain’s second-largest publicly traded water company, is now doing to generate a cost-saving renewable gas.

Here's a Great Solar Guerrilla Marketing Lesson from a Neighborhood Barbershop

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 02:00

I was walking home the other day and I just had to stop when I saw this simple but effective sign: While I didn’t need a haircut, I loved the creativity, and I thought about how this one little sign is a great lesson for some residential solar guerrilla marketing: Creative content: What made me stop was this package deal: I could get a cut, a wash,