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Renewable Energy News

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Updated: 2 min 51 sec ago

Solar Empowerment in a Rural Nicaraguan Community

Tue, 04/01/2014 - 05:50

Forty years ago Sabana Grande, a small community in northern Nicaragua, was ravaged by war. Now you will find people sitting under solar-powered lights, eating solar-cooked chicken, and drinking smoothies made by a bicycle-powered blender. Sabana Grande (pop. 2,000), in the mountains of Totogalpa, about 20 miles from the Honduran border, has embraced a solar culture that has transformed the community.

Borrego, San Diego Airport Partner on 3.3-MW Solar Project

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 13:53

Borrego Solar Systems and the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority on March 31 announced a partnership to develop a 3.3-MW solar system on the roof of the newly expanded Terminal 2 West at San Diego International Airport (SDIA) and in a section the Terminal 2 short-term parking lot adjacent to terminal.

Algae May be a Potential Source of Biofuels and Biochemicals Even in Cool Climate

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 11:13

Algae are organisms useful in many ways in the transition towards a bio-economy. Even in a cool climate as in Finland, algae might be used to produce biochemicals and biofuels, besides use in capture of industrial carbon dioxide emissions. The ALGIDA project coordinated by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland explored algae growing in Finland.

Solar Decathlon Houses Make Up a Solar Village to Test Microgrid Technology

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 10:19

In yet one more example of the rising interest in how microgrids that incorporate renewable energy and energy storage will change the energy landscape, Missouri University of Science and Technology (MST) has created what it says is the first “Solar Village” in the U.S.

AWEA Study Responds to Wind Industry Criticism

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 09:06

The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) issued a report seeking to refute some power industry criticism about the market effects of wind.

Solar Energy Set to Provide Power for Australia’s Mining Industry

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 08:55

First Solar Inc., the largest U.S. solar-panel maker, is close to announcing agreements to supply its technology to remote mining projects in Australia to help resources companies save on fuel costs.

Fuel-Cell Technology Boom Hampered by Need for Platinum, GE Says

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 08:42

General Electric Co. studied fuel cells and determined the technology is too dependent on platinum to be more than a niche product.

UK Green Investment Bank Pours $767 Million Into Offshore Wind

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 08:03

The U.K. Green Investment Bank placed 461 million pounds ($767 million) into two wind farms off the British coast to help the developers recycle their cash back into new projects.

US Driving Research on Hydrogen Fuel Cells

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 07:19

Hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV) were the belles of the ball at recent auto shows in Los Angeles and Tokyo, and researchers at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) continue to play a key part in improving performance and durability while driving down costs.

Are Walmart's Green Claims Simply Greenwashing?

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 07:15

In 2005, when atmospheric CO2 had climbed to 379 parts per million and Walmart's public approval rating had fallen to an all-time low, the company's then-CEO Lee Scott made a dramatic announcement. "Every company has a responsibility to reduce greenhouse gases as quickly as it can," Scott declared. He then pledged that Walmart would shift to 100 percent renewable power and become a leader on sustainability.

NYSE Plans to Delist LDK Solar on ‘Abnormally’ Low Shares

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 05:58

The New York Stock Exchange suspended trading of LDK Solar Co.’s American depositary receipts and initiated proceedings to delist the Chinese solar manufacturer because of “abnormally low” prices.

Good News from America's Heartland: Another Attack on Clean Energy Falls Short

Fri, 03/28/2014 - 11:00

Good news from America’s heartland: A bipartisan coalition in the Kansas House stood with Kansans today in support of clean and renewable energy, turning back yet another attempt to repeal state Renewable Portfolio Standard aimed at fostering homegrown resources like wind and solar power. Specifically, 77 members of the Kansas House of Representati

From the Editor: Energy Storage Gives Us The Power of Flexibility

Fri, 03/28/2014 - 10:20

#rewvideoid=3326897357001# When we consider the rapid rise of energy storage technology that we are witnessing all across the globe, it is key that we remember all of the reasons that this technology is and/or will be a key component in the grid of the future.  Today’s energy storage is not just about having a battery backup for a solar PV system (

CPV Update: SunPower Ramps Up in China, Soitec Achieves South Africa Milestone

Fri, 03/28/2014 - 09:53

SunPower says it has sold 70 MW of concentrated solar PV (CPV) "cell packages" to its joint venture in China's Inner Mongolia region for the first phase of two projects using the company's C7 low-concentration CPV (LCPV) technology: a 20-MW (dc) project in Saihan and a 100-MW (dc) project in Wuchuan, both scheduled for completion in 2015.

Our Investments Matter

Fri, 03/28/2014 - 09:33

Many people consider themselves to be moral, but also feel morality has no place in investing. There is much argument about whether “Socially Responsible Investing” helps or harms returns, but it is not a moral argument.  Some people believe gambling is immoral, others don’t.  Neither group makes a distinction between the morality of gambling winni

UK Renewable Electricity Generation Rose 28 Percent in 2013

Fri, 03/28/2014 - 08:09

U.K. renewable power generation rose 28 percent last year as more wind farms and solar plants came online, the Department of Energy and Climate Change said.

Solar PR Memo to SolarWorld: Is It Time for the Win-Win-Win?

Fri, 03/28/2014 - 08:06

Dear SolarWorld, As a solar advocate and solar marketing consultant, I’d like to offer you some unsolicited PR and damage control advice again, this time regarding your most recent trade suit against China and Taiwan. Please value this advice for what it’s worth (free!). (For those readers needing a quickie review of SolarWorld’s trade complaint, h

Panasonic Hesitant to Commit to Tesla Battery Factory

Fri, 03/28/2014 - 08:03

Panasonic Corp., Tesla Motors Inc.’s primary supplier of lithium-ion cells for its electric Model S sedans, hasn’t committed to investing in the massive U.S. battery plant proposed by Tesla’s Elon Musk.

Building the Electricity System of the Future: Thinking Disruption, Doing Solutions

Fri, 03/28/2014 - 08:00

The speed of disruptive innovation in the electricity sector has been outpacing regulatory and utility business model reform, which is why they now sometimes feel in conflict. That disruptive innovation is only accelerating. RMI’s recent report,The Economics of Grid Defection: When and where distributed solar generation plus storage competes with traditional utility service, sets a timeline for utilities, regulators, and others to get ahead of the curve and shift from reactive to proactive approaches. Becoming proactive and deliberate about the electricity system's transformation, and doing so ahead of any fundamental shifts in customer economics, would enable us to optimize the grid and make distributed technologies the integral and valuable piece we believe they can and should be.

The Pros' Clean Energy Picks: Solar Dominates, Emerging Markets Drag

Fri, 03/28/2014 - 07:59

In December, I asked my panel of professional green money managers for their top three stock picks for 2014. You can find the full list and descriptions of the companies here.