After a first debate that mentioned infamous solar manufacturer Solyndra but offered little substantive energy policy discussion, President Barack Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney made energy issues a central topic during their second debate on Tuesday night. Solar energy garnered several specific call-outs from both candidates.
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The FedEx Express arm of FedEx Corp. today broke ground on its largest solar panel project to date, which will be mounted on the rooftops of its three distribution facilities at Newark Liberty International Airport.
The price of solar panels continues to drop, making solar power more cost-effective for mainstream use
Solar power has long been known for its environmental benefits, but as the technology becomes more affordable, it's taken on mainstream use in homes, farms and businesses.
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar officially announced last week that the Department of the Interior has designated 285,000 acres of public land for solar development on pre-sited zones in the Western states of Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah, as RenewableEnergyWorld.com reported in July.
Making electricity from the sun always appealed to Bruce Monson, an Air Force veteran who lives on a rolling farmstead southeast of Columbia. But when Monson looked to install solar panels on his property, he learned it would cost $22,000. Then he discovered an electric cooperative wanted to charge him $50 a month to connect the panels to a power line.
As governments around the world tinker over how best to support solar energy, a number of large corporations have thrown their weight behind the renewable resource. These moves could potentially shift the momentum driving the solar industry away from the public sector and onto private enterprise.
The Henderson County Detention Center, a 543-occupant detention facility, will cut hot water costs by 45 percent through the installation of a solar energy system from Asheville-based renewable energy firm SolTherm.
Two and half years ago, Steve Stewart erected a 100-foot windmill at his Barstow, California home. Stewart is no eco-crusader, but he does know a good deal when he hears it.
The solar industry is entering a dynamic period as costs decline, demand for electricity continues to grow, and competition heats up. The result has been a rise in M&A and vertical integration as solar energy providers seek to carve out a leading role in the market and ensure that they have access to customers.
A solar energy array now working at Jefferson County International Airport makes the small airfield the only airport in the state with operational reliance on solar power.