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September 12 -- Developers installed 832 megawatts of solar power capacity in the U.S. in the second quarter, led by large projects that sell electricity to utilities, a trade group said.  Installation grew 15 percent from the prior quarter, with flat results in the residential market and commercial demand slumping 11 percent, the Washington-based Solar Energy Industries Association said today in a statement. Utility-scale projects increased 42 percent. >>View Article

Thursday, 12 September 2013 14:44

Hydroelectric Power Makes Big Comeback At US Dams

September 12 -- On a typical summer weekend, hundreds of boats glide across the shimmering surface of Iowa's Lake Red Rock, the state's largest body of water. The placid 15,000-acre lake was created in the 1960s after the government built a dam to prevent frequent flooding on the Des Moines River. Now the cool waters behind the dam are attracting interest beyond warm-weather recreation. A power company wants to build a hydroelectric plant here — a project that reflects renewed interest in hydropower nationwide, which could bring changes to scores of American dams. >>View Article

Thursday, 12 September 2013 14:35

A Call For Greener Investments

September 12 -- Some Massachusetts lawmakers want the state to join a growing national movement that is fighting climate change by pressuring institutional investors such as pension funds and university endowments to divest holdings in companies that produce, distribute, and support fossil fuels.  Fossil fuels include oil, natural gas, and coal, which, when burned, produce carbon dioxide, the major culprit in climate change. Earlier this week, the Legislature held its first hearing on a bill that would require the state pension fund to unload over five years some $1.4 billion in investments — about 2.6 percent of the $54.4 billion fund — in oil companies, mining companies, refiners, and similar corporations. An estimated 200 people rallied in support of the bill in front of the State House Tuesday. >>View Article

September 11 -- Some Atlanta drivers — who are shouldering the highest car ownership costs in the nation — have seized upon an electrifying solution.  The number of plug-in cars on the road in Georgia is increasing by about 500 a month, and last month, Atlanta became the top-selling market in the country for the nation’s top-selling all-electric vehicle, the Nissan LEAF, surpassing even San Francisco and Los Angeles. >>View Article

September 11 -- Some western U.S. states have already made full use of their best locations for large-scale wind and solar power generation, creating opportunities for neighbouring states that still have suitable sites and for small-scale solar generation. Renewable resources are bountiful in theory - a few tens of square kilometres of desert could supply enough solar power for the world's electricity needs - but that is before taking practicalities into account. >>View Article

September 11 -- Solar panels are the next granite countertops: an amenity for new homes that’s becoming a standard option for buyers in U.S. markets. At least six of 10 largest U.S. homebuilders led by KB Home include the photovoltaic devices in new construction, according to supplier SunPower Corp. (SPWR:US) Two California towns are mandating installations, and demand for the systems that generate electricity at home will jump 56 percent nationwide this year, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association. >>View Article

Wednesday, 11 September 2013 15:54

Utility Moves Forward On $255M Wind Power Project

September 11 -- Consumers Energy plans to begin construction this year on a $255 million wind power project in Michigan that will expand the company's renewable energy options. The unit of Jackson-based CMS Energy Corp. announced Wednesday that it signed a contract with Southfield-based Barton Malow Co. for engineering, procurement and construction services at the Cross Winds Energy Park, a 105-megawatt wind farm in Tuscola County. >>View Article

September 10 -- Xcel Energy Inc. is proposing to triple the amount of utility-scale solar power on its grid in Colorado, and add another 450 megawatts of wind power. The proposal, filed with the Colorado Public Utilities Commission, is the result of months of competitive bidding by power plant developers eager to supply electricity to Xcel. >>View Article

September 10 -- The U.S. Army has picked 17 companies that will be eligible to receive orders for wind energy under an umbrella contract valued at up to $7 billion, the Pentagon said on Monday.The companies include many large energy producers including Dominion Energy, a unit of Dominion Resources Inc (D.N); the U.S. unit of Spain's Acciona SA (ANA.MC); Duke Energy Corp (DUK.N); the U.S. unit of France's EDF Energies Nouvelles; and the U.S. unit of Spain's Iberdrola SA (IBE.MC). >>View Article

September 10 -- It is one of the most iconic ports in the world, the dramatic backdrop to everything from ancient Roman sailing ships to World War Two military vessels and gas-guzzling speedboats.Now London's historic River Thames has played host to a new generation of boat -- one which could revolutionize not just the future of nautical design, but scientific research on the high seas. Introducing MS Turanor Planet Solar -- the world's largest solar-powered boat. >>View Article

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