Nevada became the poster child for the national net-metering debate last year when state regulators voted to slash the credits paid to rooftop solar owners who send power back to the grid. New installations ground to a halt, as prominent installers like SolarCity Corp. and Sunrun Inc. shut down operations in the Silver State. But signs of change are afoot.
Colorado is one of 11 states that generated at least 10 percent of its total electricity from wind last year, according to an analysis by the Energy Information Administration.
Renewable energy investment probably has reached a peak of $349 billion that won’t be surpassed for at least five years, signaling a lull in the global fight against climate change. That’s the outlook from Michael Liebreich, founder of Bloomberg New Energy Finance, who predicted funding for wind, solar and other clean-energy projects will probably fall at least 15 percent this year. At a conference in Shanghai on Tuesday, he outlined how the industry’s capacity to generate power will keep growing even with lower investment.
Top oil companies including Saudi Armco and Shell will join forces to set up an investment fund to develop technologies to cut carbon emissions and promote renewable energy, sources said on Wednesday. The chief executives of seven oil and gas companies — BP, Eni, Repsol, Saudi Aramco, Shell, Statoil and Total — will announce details of the fund and other steps to reduce greenhouse gases in London on Friday.
With investor scrutiny mounting on climate risks, a White House official suggested yesterday that companies that plan for reduced carbon emissions are “going to come out ahead.” Ali Zaidi, the Office of Management and Budget’s associate director for natural resources, energy and science, was asked during an Atlantic Council event about companies that use a shadow price of carbon in corporate decision making.
The brutal campaign for the White House has dominated the election cycle — and worried House and Senate lawmakers dependent on the top of the ticket to sway their own races — but there’s a whole other set of pitched battles going on down-ballot, covering everything from energy regulation to legalized drugs. n Florida, the clash is over the future of solar-generated electricity, while in Nevada, it’s about deregulation of the electric grid. Among the many decisions before California voters is whether to legalize recreational marijuana, while in Colorado, voters could make future fights over oil and gas development less likely to go before voters.
Tesla Motors Inc. CEO Elon Musk unveiled a much-anticipated “solar roof” Friday as part of his company’s quest to be at the forefront in fighting climate change. At an event at Universal Studios in Los Angeles, Musk said the new product fits into a three-part approach to cutting emissions through electric cars, home batteries and clean power. He also unveiled a more powerful version of Tesla’s existing Powerwall home battery with about twice the energy storage capacity of the current model.
The next leader of the Department of Energy might be its current one. Hillary Clinton is considering keeping Ernest Moniz on as secretary of energy, should she win the presidential election next month, a source familiar with the Clinton campaign’s planning told BuzzFeed News
A new report by researchers from Berkeley Lab has raised the possibility that we are underestimating the potential for and uncertainty of wind energy cost reductions. There has been a lot of coverage lately of the dramatic cost reductions for wind energy over the last few years, and the potential this has for challenging fossil fuel-based electricity generation.
The states that have been the earliest to embrace a shift to smaller-scale energy generation are now slowly refining their approaches to reforming the grid. New York and California are the first states to attempt to corral and direct the changes to utilities’ traditional business models wrought by distributed generation. Officials from both states have been trying to take a loose, incremental approach and have so far avoided “any big failures,” a California regulator said last week.