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Renewables Will Replace Gas as Top U.S. Power Source in 2031

Renewables will overtake natural gas as the dominant source of electricity generation in the U.S. in 2031, even without subsidies as wind and solar costs plunge, a Bloomberg New Energy Finance analysis showed.

This U.S. shift will be driven by $745 billion in investments in renewables through 2040, outstripping the projected $95 billion that will be spent on building new fossil-fuel plants, said Elena Giannakopoulou, lead economist at BNEF. Solar and wind capacity will become cheaper than gas or coal without any incentives after 2020.

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Coal and Gas to Stay Cheap, But Renewables Still Win Race On Costs

Low prices for coal and gas are likely to persist, but will fail to prevent a fundamental transformation of the world electricity system over coming decades towards renewable sources such as wind and solar, and towards balancing options such as batteries.

The latest long-term forecast from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, entitled New Energy Outlook 2016, charts a significantly lower track for global coal, gas and oil prices than did the equivalent projection a year ago. Crucially, however, it also shows a steeper decline for wind and solar costs.

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Solar Made Up 64% of New Electric Generating Capacity in the US in Q1 2016

In the first quarter of 2016, 1,665 megawatts of solar PV were installed in the United States with the solar industry adding more new capacity during this period than coal, natural gas and nuclear combined. According to GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association’s (SEIA) U.S. Solar Market Insight, Q2 2016, the 1,665 megawatts accounted for 64 percent of all new electric generating capacity brought on-line in the first quarter of the year.

This growth builds off the momentum of a record 2015, in which solar exceeded natural-gas capacity additions on an annual basis for the first time ever. The report also says that this year the U.S. solar industry will install an unprecedented 14.5 gigawatts of capacity, a 94 percent jump over the 7.5 gigawatts in capacity installed in 2015. This growth cements solar energy’s role as a mainstay in America’s portfolio of electricity sources.

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Renewable Energy Surges to Record Levels Around the World

New solar, wind and hydropower sources were added in 2015 at the fastest rate the world has yet seen, a study says.

Investments in renewables during the year were more than double the amount spent on new coal and gas-fired power plants, the Renewables Global Status Report found.

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Clean-Energy Jobs Surpass Oil Drilling for First Time in U.S.

The number of U.S. jobs in solar energy overtook those in oil and natural gas extraction for the first time last year, helping drive a global surge in employment in the clean-energy business as fossil-fuel companies faltered.

Employment in the U.S. solar business grew 12 times faster than overall job creation, the International Renewable Energy Agency said in a report on Wednesday. About 8.1 million people worldwide had jobs in the clean energy in 2015, up from 7.7 million in 2014, according to the industry group based in Abu Dhabi.

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Renewable Energy Is Coming Online at a Record Pace

How big is the United States’ renewable energy boom?

Big. Very big. For the first three months of 2016, the United States electrical grid added 70 times the amount of new energy capacity from renewable sources that it did from natural gas.

This is a record, according to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s latest Energy Infrastructure Update report, which noted that no new capacity was added to the grid from coal, oil, or nuclear power generation.

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Germany Just Got Almost All of Its Power From Renewable Energy

Clean power supplied almost all of Germany’s power demand for the first time on Sunday, marking a milestone for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s “Energiewende” policy to boost renewables while phasing out nuclear and fossil fuels.

Solar and wind power peaked at 2 p.m. local time on Sunday, allowing renewables to supply 45.5 gigawatts as demand was 45.8 gigawatts, according to provisional data by Agora Energiewende, a research institute in Berlin. Power prices turned negative during several 15-minute periods yesterday, dropping as low as minus 50 euros ($57) a megawatt-hour, according to data from Epex Spot.

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U.S. Still Tops The List Of Most Attractive Renewable Energy Markets

The U.S. has maintained its No. 1 spot as the most enticing renewable energy market for investors in EY’s latest Renewable Energy Country Attractiveness Index (RECAI). Now in its 47th edition, the index ranks 40 markets on the attractiveness of their renewable energy investment and deployment opportunities, based on a number of macro, energy market and technology-specific indicators.

Notwithstanding uncertainty over its Clean Power Plan, the U.S. held its position following the five-year extension of federal tax credits for wind and solar, according to the RECAI. The report says this provided critical certainty for investors and is forecast to galvanize significant capacity deployment through to 2020.

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A Powerful 1-2 Punch: Renewable Energy Tax Credits and the Clean Power Plan

The clean energy transition is well underway in the United States, but strong policies are needed to keep the momentum going. Today the Union of Concerned Scientists is releasing a new analysis showing how two federal measures—the recently extended wind and solar tax credits and the Clean Power Plan—can work together to provide a powerful and affordable boost for clean energy while helping to cut power sector carbon emissions. What’s more, our analysis finds these policies can also deliversignificant economic and health benefits to consumers nationwide.

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