NewEnergyNews: SUN STILL HOT


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  • TODAY’S STUDY: Study Shows Solar Is NOT Going Just To The Rich
  • QUICK NEWS, June 18: Buying A Home In A Time Of Climate Change; New Reasons To Buy New Energy

  • Weekend Video: There Is No ‘New Ice Age’
  • Weekend Video: Talking Offshore Wind
  • Weekend Video: The Stuff Of Tomorrow’s New Energy

  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Are Climate Change Denial And Racism Connected?
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Around The World, New Energy Is Booming
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-EVs To Boost India Power Delivery


  • TTTA Thursday-Cut Premature Births By Closing Coal
  • TTTA Thursday-U.S. Ocean Wind Gets Stronger
  • TTTA Thursday-Nothing Can Hold Solar Back

  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: Join or die: How utilities are coping with 100% renewable energy goals
  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: Massachusetts and California provide different lessons on growing community solar
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  • TODAY AT NewEnergyNews, July 19:

  • TODAY’S STUDY: New Energy – A Global Overview
  • QUICK NEWS, June 19: Things To Do About Climate Change; Why Customer Choice

    Tuesday, March 24, 2009


    U.S. installed solar capacity up 17 percent in 2008
    Bernie Woodall (w/Marguerita Choy), March 20, 2009 (Reuters)
    Solar Energy Industry Group Reports US Solar Market Hit Record Growth In 2008, Despite Economic Crisis; Smart federal policies needed to maintain growth and meet President Obama’s renewable energy goals
    March 19, 2009 (SEIA)

    Installed solar energy electricity generating capacity in the U.S. grew 17% (1,265 megawatts) in 2008 to 8,775 megawatts, according to U.S. Solar Industry Year In Review 2008 from the Solar Energy Industry Association (SEIA).

    The new solar included 342 megawatts of solar photovoltaic (PV), 139 megawatts thermal equivalent of solar water heating, 762 megawatts thermal equivalent of pool heating and an estimated 21 megawatts of solar space heating and cooling.

    It was the biggest single-year growth in U.S. solar energy industry history and the 3rd straight year of record-breaking industry growth.

    Based on plans for 6,000 megawatts (6 gigawatts) of solar power plant development (in California, Arizona, Nevada and Florida), 2009 is expected to be another record-setting year.

    click to enlarge

    Total U.S. grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) capacity is ~800 megawatts. The leading states in that sector are (1) California, 530.1 megawatts, (2) New Jersey, 70.2 megawatts, (3) Colorado, 35.7 megawatts, (4) Nevada, 33.2 megawatts, and Hawaii, 11.3 megawatts.

    Solar power plant technologies, also called concentrating solar technologies, attract investment because of their large scale and potential for storage. Grid-connected PV development is attractive due to its availability at the hottest part of the day to offset peak demand on the grid as well as its ability to supply off-grid power.

    In a first indication of the way newly available Energy Department loan guarantees will act to facilitate New Energy development, a $535 million loan guarantee was approved for PV manufacturer Solyndra Inc., for the construction (by late 2010 or early 2011) of a production plant in California that will create 3,000 construction jobs and, eventually, more than 1,000 plant positions.

    28 states now have Renewable Electricity Standards (RESs) requiring utilities to obtain a specific portion of their power from New energy sources by a date certain. 19 of those RESs have "carve-outs" requiring a specific portion of the power to come from solar and/or distributed generation. 42 states (and D.C.) have net metering provisions, allowing New energy system owners to obtain at least some returns from utilities for power sent to the grid.

    U.S. PV manufacturing capacity grew 65% to 685 megawatts in 2008.

    click to enlarge

    - Solar energy is second only to wind power in U.S. New Energy capacity.
    - But solar has a long way to go to catch up. The wind industry added almost as many NEW megawatts in 2008 (8,538) as the solar industry’s total capacity. Wind has an installed total capacity of 25,170 megawatts.
    - Solar’s growth is, however, more rapid. And with a new emphasis on solar power plant technologies, the solar industry may very well become serious competition for wind. Scientific computations indicate the U.S. total potential solar capacity is much greater than that of wind.
    - 2009 growth is expected to boom as the result of recent enhancements to the solar energy investment tax credit (ITC). The ITC’s 30% cap was removed and it was made available for the first time to utilities.

    click to enlarge

    - The rising interest in solar power plants is based on a pair of important ways they differ from grid-connected PV installations. First, they are utility-scale installations. Size matters to the utilities driving power plant development because they are faced with state Renewable Electrticity Standard (RES) obligations as well as the looming likelihood of a national RES requiring 10% of their power to come from New Energy sources by 2012 and 25% by 2025.
    - The second reason for rapidly growing interest in solar power plant technology is that it offers the possibility for storage over a 6-to-24-hour period of solar energy generated power. Such storage capability would essentially make solar energy available 24/7 because there are ample resources to meet daytime demand while storing adequate power to meet nighttime needs.
    - Power plant storage would be in the form of pressurized steam produced during the heat of the day's sun that could be released after sunset to go on driving plant turbines.

    click to enlarge

    - Rhone Resch, President/CEO, Solar Energy Industry Association (SEIA): "Despite severe economic pressures in the United States, demand for solar energy grew tremendously in 2008…Increasingly, solar energy has proven to be an economic engine for this country, creating thousands of jobs, unleashing billions in investment dollars and building new factories from New Hampshire to Michigan to Oregon…"

    click to enlarge

    - Roger Efird, Chairman, SEIA/President, Suntech America, Inc.: “The growth of solar manufacturing jobs in the U.S. was a breath of fresh air for communities hit hard by the recession. The recently enacted manufacturing tax credit will give further incentive to manufacturers…With the right policies, solar deployment will continue robust growth and thousands of new green-collar jobs in manufacturing will be created in states where jobs are needed most.”


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