About 80 Austin-based employee volunteers from global solar innovator, SunPower, brought solar energy to four low-income families in Austin’s Blackland Neighborhood. Working with national solar nonprofit Grid Alternatives over two days, the volunteers installed four rooftop solar systems totaling 13 kilowatts of generating capacity. The systems are expected to save each family electricity costs, and collectively reduce approximately 233 tons of greenhouse gas emissions over their expected 25-year life.
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Borrego Solar Systems Inc., a California-based solar power project designer, developer, installer, and operations and maintenance (O&M) provider, says that since expanding its O&M services to all owners of commercial- and utility-scale PV plants in early 2015, the company now has 265 MW of assets under contract. The current portfolio is more than double what Borrego Solar managed in 2014 and quadruple that of 2013. Prior to 2015, the company only offered its O&M services to PV system owners of the projects it designed and built.
Soon after SolarCity acquired solar panel maker Silevo in the summer of 2014, it announced the construction of a 1.2-million-square-foot 'Solar Gigafactory' in Buffalo, New York. The Buffalo solar gigafactory aims to start producing solar cells in 2016, with a ramping up to 1 GW of annual capacity by 2017. If all goes well, the facility could eventually be expanded to 5 GW/year at some point. The solar cells produced there have a target price of around $0.50/watt, which would make them very competitive with other power sources.
An aquaponic nursery in Hawaii is using solar PV, battery storage and an energy management system to operate independently of the utility grid. EnSync Energy Systems says its energy management system has been operating continuously for four months, enabling Mari’s Garden to store power from its solar system and discharge it at a later time. Mari's Garden faces high energy consumption due to aquaponics on site that combine growing plants hydroponically with growing fish through aquaculture.
Following is a statement from Sean Gallagher, vice president of state affairs for the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), following this evening’s remarks by Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker in his 2016 State of the Commonwealth address
Powered by growing residential and commercial markets, the neighboring states of Oregon and Washington are set to make significant gains this year in new solar installations, according to the recently-released U.S. Solar Market Insight 2014 Year in Review. The two Northwest states are expected to top 200 megawatts (MW) of combined solar electric capacity by the end of 2015 – enough to power nearly 25,000 homes.
WASHINTON, DC - Powered by a rapidly-growing residential market, Louisiana became a Top 20 solar state for the first time last year, according to the recently-released U.S. Solar Market Insight 2014 Year in Review. It was the fifth straight year that Louisiana showed strong growth in solar installations.
Powered by a robust utility-scale market, Indiana ranked 14th in the nation in installed solar capacity last year, according to the recently-released U.S. Solar Market Insight 2014 Year in Review. It was the second straight year that Indiana exceeded 50 megawatts (MW) of new installations.
Showing strength in all market sectors, Connecticut ranked 16th in the nation in installed solar capacity last year, according to the recently-released U.S. Solar Market Insight 2014 Year in Review.
Led by solid growth in both the residential and commercial markets, Colorado ranked 13th in the nation in installed solar capacity last year, according to the recently-released U.S. Solar Market Insight 2014 Year in Review.
Namasté Solar has been selected as one of OUTSIDE’s Best Places to Work 2015. Each year, OUTSIDE recognizes the top 100 companies in the United States that help their employees strike the ideal balance between work and play. These companies encourage employees to lead an active lifestyle, are eco-conscious, and prioritize giving back to the community. The entire list of winners appears online at www.outsideonline.com/dreamjobs.
Canadian Solar Inc. has won three solar photovoltaic (PV) projects totaling 110 megawatts (MWp) in Pirapora, in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Canadian Solar will develop and build the solar power plants. Once connected to the grid, the electricity generated will be sold to CCEE (Camara de Comercializacao de Energia Eletrica), under a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement at approximately $78.8/MWh. The three projects are targeted to reach commercial operation by late 2018.
- 100MW in Shangtuhai Village, Wuchuan County
- 20MW in Qianbaimiao Village, Jinhe Town, Saihan District
- 50MW in Mandahtu Town Sunite Zuoqi, Xilinguole
There's at least one industry that serves as a bright spot for veterans: solar. Not only is solar employment growing 10 times faster than in the economy as a whole, "veterans are rising through the industry and they're advocating for other vets," explains Anna Bautista, Vice-President for Construction and Workforce Development at the non-profit solar installer GRID Alternatives. In the solar industry, veterans make up almost 10 percent of the workforce, more than their percentage in the adult population.
Section 25 of the federal residential Investment Tax Credit drops to zero on Jan. 1, 2017 -- a short 13 months from now. Effectively, the after-incentive selling price to residential homeowners will go up by 30 percent. A typical 5-kilowatt system at $4 per watt will increase in price from $14,000 (with the 30 percent ITC) to $20,000. It doesn’t take a degree in economics to conclude that residential sales will plummet.