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‘Well over 1,000 jobs’ on solar horizon here

June 18 -- The solar panel factory slated to be part of the RiverBend clean-energy hub in South Buffalo could be more than five times bigger than originally planned, after the California-based company agreed Tuesday to be acquired by one of the nation’s biggest installers of solar power systems.

Instead of creating 475 jobs, as originally promised by the solar panel-maker Silevo, the $200 million deal and the expansion of the Buffalo factory could create “well over 1,000 jobs” under the company’s new owner, SolarCity Corp. of San Mateo, Calif. Its chairman is Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk. >>View Article

Texas Utility Doubles Large-Scale Solar, Says It Will Be Coal-Free By 2016

June 18 -- Thanks to new investments in natural gas and utility-scale solar energy, El Paso Electric, a Texas utility with nearly 400,000 customers, announced on Monday that its electricity mix will be free from coal by 2016.

Thanks to successive investments in large solar projects, EPE has doubled its utility-scale solar portfolio in less than one year. “Our west Texas and southern New Mexico region has the right kind of sun for optimal solar energy production, making this region the ‘goldilocks’ in terms of climate, humidity and heat characteristics that allow us to expand our renewable portfolio with cost-effective technologies and reliable energy resources,” said Tom Shockley, Chief Executive Officer at El Paso Electric, said in a statement. >>View Article

Reasons to believe

June 18 -- The National Climate Assessment released earlier this month confirmed that climate disruption is already affecting our health, our communities, and our economy. It also shows what the future will look like across the U.S. depending on whether we take strong action to cut carbon emissions. >>View Article

Wisconsin Energy Sources: “Too Many Eggs In One Basket”

June 18 -- MADISON, Wis. - There is mixed news regarding Wisconsin's future energy priorities, according to an official of the state's largest environmental organization. The good news is that the state's utilities have hit their renewable-energy target two years ahead of schedule, said Keith Reopelle, senior policy director for Clean Wisconsin. That puts the state in a good position to achieve proposed new carbon-emission standards, he said. >>View Article

Elon Musk lays out his vision for a solar energy future

June 18 -- Tesla and SolarCity CEO Elon Musk's today announced a deal to acquire Silevo, a solar panel firm based in Silicon Valley. Musk explained the decision in a blog post:

SolarCity was founded to accelerate mass adoption of sustainable energy. The sun, that highly convenient and free fusion reactor in the sky, radiates more energy to the Earth in a few hours than the entire human population consumes from all sources in a year. This means that solar panels, paired with batteries to enable power at night, can produce several orders of magnitude more electricity than is consumed by the entirety of human civilization. >>View Article

Wind farm tax revenue a boon to county, school coffers

June 16 -- Before wind energy developers come into a county or township to start prospecting and negotiating with landowners for easements to build wind energy infrastructure on private property, there's one claim they invariably make. County economic development officials and supervisors are assured that wind energy will bring in substantial property tax revenue to the county. Is their claim true? >>View Article

Global Wind Energy Day

June 16 -- June 15 is Global Wind Energy Day. As Colorado is a world leader in wind energy production, it is not only fitting to tout our success, but to encourage its further production. >>View Article

Op-ed: EPA carbon plan works for Utah, despite delegation’s complaints

June 16 -- 

Sadly, some in Utah’s congressional delegation greeted EPA’s long-awaited "Clean Power Plan" with a knee-jerk response that amounts to no more than uninformed fear-mongering.

Rep. Chris Stewart dismissed these welcome limits on the nation’s biggest carbon polluters as "big-government regulations and less freedom for American business and American families." Sen. Orrin Hatch described it as a "radical policy."

In reality, the EPA’s proposal is a straightforward and flexible approach that will help Utah families. >>View Article

Molvar: Carbon policy and real Wyoming solutions

June 16 -- The Obama Administration’s plan to reduce carbon pollution from coal-fired power plants announced last week has sparked a chorus of doom-saying in Wyoming.

But the trend away from fossil fuels is an ongoing, market-based reality whether you like the Obama plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions or not. While the state of Wyoming continues to cozy up to the fossil fuel industry, other states – the states to which Wyoming hopes to sell the dirty energy we produce – are transitioning away from fossil fuels. >>View Article

EPA Carbon Rule is a Winner

June 16 -- Last week, the Environmental Protection Agency revealed its carbon reduction plan for existing power plants. EPA’s Clean Power Plan represents America’s most significant effort so far to transition to a clean energy economy and combat climate change. Mother Nature will be undoubtedly grateful, but the economy will have plenty of reasons to celebrate, too. The fact is, the environment and the economy are not mutually exclusive. As CalCEF President and ACORE board co-chair Dan Reicher aptly put it, “the renewable energy industry is living proof that flexible carbon rules can be both good for the economy and good for the environment." >>View Article

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