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Study Confirms Midwest is Sitting on a Goldmine of Energy Savings Potential

April 7 -- An important new federal study confirms that saving energy is far less expensive than generating power in a power plant. It also shows that here in the Midwest, energy efficiency programs are succeeding at delivering energy savings at rock-bottom costs, translating into lower customer bill savings as we eliminate the need for building new power plants.

Specifically, the study reports a national average levelized cost of implementing utility energy efficiency programs of about 2 cents per kilowatt hour – compared to the range of 6 to 15 cents per kwh that it would cost to build new power plants. However, in the Midwest that average cost of saved energy was just 1.4 cents per kwh, which is just a quarter of the cost of the least expensive new power plant options. >>View Article

Wind Power Sets Records on Oklahoma, Texas Electric Grids

April 4 -- Helped by long-awaited investments in transmission infrastructure and new projects, wind power generation hit new highs last month in the regional grids that serve Oklahoma and Texas.

Wind power accounted for 7,202 megawatts of electricity March 18 in the Southwest Power Pool, the regional transmission organization that covers Oklahoma and parts of eight other states. That surpassed the previous record of 6,448 megawatts set in October. The data was compiled by the American Wind Energy Association. >>View Article

The Outlook for Renewable Energy

April 4 -- Renewable energy has now become a technology of choice for many Americans, accounting for nearly 40% of all new, domestic power capacity installed in 2013. Presently, renewable power capacity exceeds 190 GW, biofuels are responsible for roughly 10% of our nation’s fuel supply, and renewable thermal energy systems heat and cool a growing number of homes, businesses, public buildings, and other structures throughout the country. The array of technologies are either fully or increasingly cost-competitive with conventional energy sources, and costs continue to fall. Per Bloomberg New Energy Finance, private sector investment in the U.S. clean energy sector surpassed $100 billion in 2012-2013, stimulating economic development while supporting hundreds of thousands of jobs. This impressive growth of renewable energy is a signal that, when certain, state and federal policies have worked. >>View Article

Viewpoints: Green Bank Would Create More Clean Energy Innovation

April 3 -- As a venture capitalist, I spend much of my time on the unvarnished edge of capitalism. It’s a place where some level of failure is inevitable, survival of the fittest is an understatement, and success is usually the result of a combination of merit, relentless hard work and a little luck thrown in for good measure.

It’s in this spirit that I, along with colleagues like the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, support current proposals to create a California Green Bank to help grow clean energy innovation. Today, the Senate Budget Subcommittee on Resources, Environmental Protection, Energy and Transportation will consider spending priorities for the cap-and-trade auction revenue, estimated to be $850 million in 2014. They should consider spending a quarter of that to launch a Green Bank. >>View Article

Apple Praised, Amazon Shamed in Greenpeace Report on Clean Energy

April 3 -- As technology titans such as Apple, Google, and Facebook battle for the title of greenest data maker, one of the Internet's key players, Amazon, is ignoring the cause altogether and falling dangerously behind its peers, according to a new Greenpeace report.

The organization's new report, "Clicking Clean: How Companies are Creating the Green Internet," identifies Amazon, which runs Amazon Web Services (AWS) and plays host to a significant portion of the Internet, as one of the most egregious companies when it comes to using what the organization labels "dirty" energy, a category that includes nuclear and coal power, to run its massive centers. >>View Article

Our View: What is the Future of Geothermal For State?

April 3 -- Geothermal has long been the go-to, viable and time-proven renewable energy source for Imperial County and our corner of extreme Southern California. But what is its place in the statewide, even national landscape of the green industry?

That seems to be the question Imperial County’s state representatives are trying to find an answer to this week as Imperial County, namely the Imperial Irrigation District and the Salton Sea Authority, has big plans for developing geothermal as a means to save the sea and power more homes in the state and beyond. >>View Article

D.C. SUN is a Group Approach to Renewable Energy

April 3 -- Since beginning seven years ago, D.C. Solar United Neighborhoods has brought photovoltaic power to 115 households, with hundreds more poised to join. The program has expanded to all eight wards and established affiliates in Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia. DC SUN is about to begin a group installation in Ward 3, and has just completed a second round in its original neighborhood, Mount Pleasant. >>View Article

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