NewEnergyNews: Rooftop Solar Vs. A National New Energy System

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    THINGS-TO-THINK-ABOUT WEDNESDAY, July 28:

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    Founding Editor Herman K. Trabish

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  • The Fight For Tomorrow’s Grid Gets Bigger

    Wednesday, July 21, 2021

    Rooftop Solar Vs. A National New Energy System

    More Power Lines or Rooftop Solar Panels: The Fight Over Energy’s Future; The choices that lawmakers, energy businesses and individuals make in the next few years could lock in an energy system that lasts for decades.

    Ivan Penn and Clifford Krauss, July 12, 2021 (NY Times)

    “The nation is facing once-in-a-generation choices about how energy ought to be delivered…On one side, large electric utilities and President Joe Biden want to build thousands of miles of power lines to move electricity created by distant wind turbines and solar farms to cities and suburbs…On the other, some environmental organizations and community groups are pushing for greater investment in rooftop solar panels, batteries and local wind turbines…[The intense policy struggle] could lock in an energy system that lasts for decades…

    Most energy experts agree that the United States must improve its aging electric grids…[to] replace coal and natural gas power plants with large wind and solar farms hundreds of miles from cities…[Opponents] argue that solar panels, batteries and other local energy sources should be emphasized because they would be more resilient and could be built more quickly…

    …[The Biden] administration supports rooftop solar and microgrids, but believes] decentralized approaches would not be sufficient to achieve the president’s goal of eliminating greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector by 2035…[The response by rooftop solar and storage during the August 2020 outages showed they] can become mini power plants, potentially earning as much from supplying energy as they pay for electricity they draw from the grid…

    But the utility industry argues that new transmission lines are needed to get to 100% clean energy and power electric cars and trucks. Those high costs will be offset by the money saved from switching from fossil fuels to cheaper solar panels and wind turbines…Many Americans resist transmission lines for aesthetic and environmental reasons… click here for more

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