September 24 -- Scientists and drillers are searching for hot water -- and lots of it -- at Pilgrim Hot Springs, 60 miles northeast of Nome on Alaska’s western coast. A drill rig is currently chewing away at the earth, and has passed 750 feet in depth. Once it reaches 1,000 feet, groups interested in a geothermal power plant there may have their answer: can the hot springs supply enough geothermal energy to make it a worthwhile endeavor? >>View Article
September 23 -- The state’s biggest utilities, in a milestone for New England’s wind power industry, have signed long-term contracts to buy wind-generated electricity at prices below the costs of most conventional sources, such as coal and nuclear plants. The contracts, filed jointly Friday with the Department of Public Utilities, represent the largest renewable energy purchase to be considered by state regulators at one time. If approved, the contracts would eventually save customers between 75 cents and $1 a month, utilities estimated. >>View Article
September 23 -- In the next few days, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder unveiled the first of four reports on renewable energy that could potentially reshape Michigan’s energy economy. Conservatives have a real opportunity to lead in the area of renewable energy and we should applaud Governor Snyder for his leadership in the energy sector. >>View Article
September 23 -- One thing is for sure, Google is putting its money where its mouth is where green energy is concerned. One of the big boys of the Internet age, Google recently announced it plans to use even more Texas Panhandle wind to reach its goal of powering the cyberspace giant with 100 percent renewable energy — an objective pulled straight from Google’s website. >>View Article
September 23 -- The Christian Coalition believes that energy efficiency is a family value issue. What could be more important for the family than helping families save money in these hard economic times? That’s why we support Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and the bipartisan bill he has co-authored with Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) – the bill will be good for America’s families. >>View Article
September 23 -- Thanks to improvements in technology, Michigan utility companies should be capable of tripling their renewable energy use by 2035, according to a report issued Friday by the Michigan Public Service Commission and the Michigan Energy Office. >>View Article
ACORE and member law firm Wilson Sonsini hosted in the firm’s Silicon Valley office a meeting with Jonathan Powers, the Federal Environmental Executive at the White House Council on Environmental Quality; Peter Davidson, Executive Director of the DOE’s Loan Programs Office; and Ken Alston, DOE Special Assistant for Finance. ACORE west coast members met with these officials to exchange information and views on important renewable energy federal policy issues.
Mr. Powers highlighted the Administration’s plan to address climate change and double renewable energy generation again by 2020, including efforts of the federal government and the military to invest in renewable energy generation for their own use. Messrs. Davidson and Alston provided updates on the DOE’s loan guarantee program. This program has a total loan guarantee portfolio of $34.4 billion with $18.5 billion disbursed so far. DOE just recently issued a draft loan guarantee solicitation for innovative and advanced fossil energy projects and facilities that substantially reduce greenhouse gas and other air pollution, making available up to $8 billion in loan guarantee authority. DOE plans another solicitation focused on renewable energy in the next few months. Please see the White House and DOE websites for more.
September 20 -- For one, as the title above notes, solar panel costs were 60% lower in the second quarter (Q2) of 2013 than they were in early 2011. Overall solar PV system prices, on average, were 40% lower, and they were 50% lower than average solar PV system prices in early 2010. I’ve emphasized this before: if you have a cost of solar from a few years ago stuck in your head, you’re probably greatly overestimating the cost of solar today. (Get an updated estimate and an estimate of your monthly and yearly savings today.) >>View Article
September 20 -- In Texas, where oil lubricates the economy the same way it does pickup trucks, energy consumption is no exception to the state’s everything-is-bigger reputation. The nation’s leading energy producer also uses more energy by far than any other state. As the state’s population keeps surging, demand is expected to grow, prompting leaders to think about how it will meet its long-term needs. >>View Article
September 20 -- The Obama administration has decided to revive a controversial loan guarantee program at the Energy Department, administration officials said on Thursday, even as the program remains under Congressional scrutiny after losing hundreds of millions in taxpayer money on investments in failed green energy start-ups like the solar module maker Solyndra. This time, though, the program would devote as much as $8 billion to helping industries like coal and oil make cleaner energy. Although the program, which does not require Congressional approval, would support a wide range of technologies, it could help coal-fired power plants find a way to keep their emissions from escaping into the atmosphere, department officials said. >>View Article
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