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Study: Solar and Wind Won’t Break the Grid

A new report by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) shows that major power systems are able to cope quite well with increasing shares of intermittent renewables, if the right measures are taken. The study says that increased generation of these renewables does not make the grid less reliable or compromise security of supply. Critics of renewable energy have often warned that there are strict...

What India’s Solar Tariff Exemption Could Mean for...

New documents show that a few countries with significant solar manufacturing facilities are exempt from Trump’s new solar tariffs, which could help U.S. developers. The exemption could be meaningful for Adani, the largest cell and module manufacturer in India. The market impact from new solar tariffs announced earlier this week is shaping up to be less severe than it could have been. But while analysts don’t expect...

What past experience tells us about the impact of ...

On January 22, President Donald Trump imposed tariffs on solar panels in what he called an effort to “create jobs in America for Americans.” The move prompted widespread criticism from both solar and free trade advocates. While the president argued that solar companies would “com[e] back strong” with the addition of “a lot of jobs,” the Solar Energy Industry Association, which represents the full spectrum of the U.S. solar...

Solar Jobs Fall for First Time Since 2010

The U.S. solar industry lost 9,800 jobs last year, the first decline ever recorded since 2010, according to The Solar Foundation‘s latest National Solar Jobs Census. This 3.8 percent decline was driven by a number of factors, from a slowdown of utility-scale and residential solar installations to the industry’s uncertainty over President Trump‘s tariffs on imported solar panels. “After six years of...

Job Growth From Renewable Energy Sparks Conservati...

Renewable energy has begun to gain the support of conservative groups as it becomes more economically viable. One such group is the recently formed Wisconsin Conservative Energy Forum, which aims to educate conservatives about energy possibilities in the state. According to their website, the organization supports the development of local clean energy, strongly emphasizing the economic benefits that renewable energy already...

In 2018, expect ‘clean energy’ to be cheap energy...

The central fact that will drive the energy industry worldwide in 2018, profoundly affecting businesses, consumers and policymakers, is that “clean energy” is now “cheap energy.” Fossil fuel extraction is expensive. It is giving way to cheaper, more flexible technologies, primarily renewables like wind and solar, and electric vehicles. These shifts will change investment decisions, business models, household usage,...

Don’t let Trump’s solar tariff scare you. There’s ...

The president’s new tariff will hurt Americans more than the Chinese. On Monday, the White House announced Trump was putting a 30 percent tariff on imported solar cells and panels to retaliate against China’s efforts to corner the world market. Since some 80 percent of panels are imported, it’s hard for either consumers or businesses to avoid this new Trump tax. For Americans considering a shift to solar power, the new...

Trump’s Solar Tariffs Mark Biggest Blow to R...

President Donald Trump just dealt his biggest blow to the renewable energy industry yet. On Monday, Trump approved duties of as much as 30 percent on solar equipment made abroad, a move that threatens to handicap a $28 billion industry that relies on parts made abroad for 80 percent of its supply. Just the mere threat of tariffs has shaken solar developers in recent months, with some hoarding panels and others stalling...

Iowa town’s municipal utility effort is financiall...

A northeastern Iowa community could lower its electric bills by creating a municipal-owned utility, according to a feasibility study presented to its city council Tuesday. Supporters of an effort to create a city-owned electric utility in Decorah, Iowa, got a boost this week from a consultant’s report that concludes the move is financially feasible. “We think the results are very robust,” said Andy Johnson, one of the...

Regulators urged to reverse ‘net metering’ decisio...

Ohio officials made a serious mistake with a recent ruling that will discourage the use of renewable energy systems at homes and businesses, said environmental advocates Wednesday during a rare hearing before state regulators. Utility companies supported the recent policy shift that reduces some of the financial incentives of using the systems, which include solar panels and wind turbines. The Public Utilities Commission of...

The ITC’s New Solar Report Could Bolster Trump’s B...

A supplemental report delivered to Trump’s trade rep could be used to defend new solar tariffs at the WTO. The U.S. International Trade Commission released a new report on the Section 201 trade case this week that the Trump administration could use to defend new solar tariffs, if challenged at the World Trade Organization. Ambassador Robert Lighthizer, head of the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, requested the...

A Coal Executive Switched to Building Solar Plants...

Jim Lamon is the kind of businessman that Donald Trump would like. And Lamon is the kind of businessman who likes Trump. The CEO of Depcom Power grew up in Alabama, served in the Air Force for six years and spent decades constructing the kinds of coal-fired power plants Trump likes to tout. He’s contributed thousands of dollars to Republican causes, including Trump’s victory fund. But a few years ago, Lamon saw that coal’s...

How to Halve the Cost of Residential Solar in the ...

To highlight the opportunity, let’s look at Australia, where nearly 2 million solar systems have been successfully and safely installed. As of early December, installed costs in the main Australian markets were at $1.34 per watt, compared to $3.25 per watt in the U.S. What does that difference stem from? The Cost of Solar to a Homeowner in Australia vs. the U.S. In Australia, there is no permitting process. You simply lodge...

Industry Leaders Make Last-Ditch Effort to Steer T...

“Obviously, there’s only one person who knows the answer to this, and trying to get inside his head is bananas.” President Trump has two weeks left to decide whether to impose trade remedies on imported solar equipment. If he follows the guidance of his advisers, big changes could be coming to the solar industry. E&E News reported that Trump is expected to receive a formal recommendation to move forward with trade...

Iowa County (Johnson) embarking on Solarize progra...

Solarize Johnson County will be the second of its kind in Iowa IOWA CITY — On the heels of Iowa’s first Solarize program in Linn County last year, officials in Johnson County plan to embark on their own program — which incentivizes private solar development through volume purchasing prices. Becky Soglin, Johnson County sustainability coordinator, said Wednesday. Solarize Johnson County will help residents get involved in the...