Solar moves off land
Japan has been aggressively building solar projects — close to 11 GW in two years — in the wake of the decision…
First Solar is on a race to boost its core technology and remain a major player in the market.
The solar industry was one of the fastest growing sectors in the U.S. last year, and grew 10 times faster than the average adding 24K new jobs.
Google keeps on keepin’ on with its latest support of a wind farm near its Oklahoma data center.
Apple’s Reno data center is already underway, but not surprisingly it’s a bit controversial: Apple has a deal for an 85 percent reduction on its property taxes.
Google plans to buy more wind power to indirectly power a data center in Oklahoma and to help it reach its goal of increasing the amount of clean power used by its data centers.
If you believe the coal industry (or reports sponsored by the coal industry), coal power is the only way to fuel the growth of the Internet and the cloud.
As BrightSource moves ever closer to finishing its massive solar thermal farm near Las Vegas, the company is raising more money.
A German company has engineered a lithium-ion battery system with wireless communication to enable homeowners to manage their solar electricity generation and use and control appliances.
Is there a solar panel coming that can convert an unheard-of 50 percent of the suns light into electricity. Some early research indicates that yes, it’s possible, though it might take many more years to commercialize.
Heat that emanates from tailpipes and the human body can be converted directly into electricity, but the process is not very efficient or affordable right now.
After filing for bankruptcy, electric car startup Better Place has now been sold for $12 million to a group that includes a solar entrepreneur, a Canadian businessman and Better Place car owners in Israel.
Despite a difficult solar market this year, the future of solar technology was on display at the annual Intersolar conference in San Francisco this week, from startups and big companies alike.
Startup QBotix has launched its better performing, more lightweight, and easier to assemble solar robot. Are robots the future of solar trackers?
The complex world of solar financing has led to some serious startup innovation in the space. But as the sector grows up will it become a vertical or a horizontal play?
Google’s huge clean power investing project now includes Africa for the first time — a large solar panel farm being built in South Africa.
Power companies in areas with a growing amount of clean power are looking at new ways to store compressed air underground. The Pacific Northwest could get some of these next-gen air technologies in the coming years.
SolarCity is one of the leaders when it comes to installing solar panels on home owner’s rooftops. But the company’s $31 million loss, in its latest quarter, shows the growing pains for the retail solar players.
Capturing energy from light and heat using tiny antennas could be a way to produce solar energy at a lower cost, and capture and reuse waste heat from industrial processes. They’re still in the prototype phase.
After reducing production and costs and closing a big solar panel factory, First Solar says it’s done a better job of managing its supply and has sold out of its production through nearly the end of the third quarter of this year.
ABB plans to buy power inverter leader Power-One for around a billion dollars. The move shows the expected strong growth in solar panel installations, despite the hard times for the solar panel makers themselves.
Swedish thin film solar manufacturer startup Midsummer is taking a cue from optical disc manufacturing for its solar panels, but is facing a difficult solar market.
A Swedish startup has developed a new technology that it says can boost the efficiency of standard solar panels at a minimal cost using nanowires. Is this the great bright hope for solar manufacturers who have been crippled by the difficult solar market in 2013?
A new solar inverter has been developed by a quiet startup called Empower Micro Systems, which could land on the market by the end of the year. The company’s CCO says the tech could disrupt the landscape.
Beleagured Chinese solar giant, Suntech Power, was once the largest solar maker in the world. This week the company was forced into bankruptcy. But it’s not all bad news.
Contrary to the politics and headlines of the day, clean energy is a relatively trusted sector, and companies should be leveraging that good faith to lead.
Solar panels are breaking through into the mainstream. Last year there were a record-breaking amount of panels installed on rooftops in the U.S. making solar the fastest growing source of energy in the U.S.
Now that SolarCity is publicly-traded it’s got the quarterly numbers game to play. In its first earnings report post-IPO SolarCity’s shares drop on quarter loss.
The leader of the 210-year-old science giant DuPont, Ellen Kullman, sits down with GigaOM to give us her take on the future of energy for a world population that will boom to 9 billion in 2050.
Once hot thin film solar startup Nanosolar has done a round of layoffs — which could be substantial — following a major down round last year. So goes the trend of the once promising next-gen solar panel maker startups.
President Obama made one of his most aggressive declarations to using market-based means to fight climate change since early on in his first term.
Coal giant Peabody turns to a tactic that has long been used to cling to old school technology: the manipulative press release.
Financing the emerging boom of solar rooftops is an area where startups increasingly are doing well. OneRoof Energy, a startup launched just in 2011, has raised another round of equity from Korean giant Hanwha to grow its solar panel financing and sales business.
China is emerging as a massive market for solar panels, not just the world’s solar panel supplier. As of Q4 2012, China has been buying a third of the world’s solar panels.
Buying solar electric equipment takes a lot of time, and good information can be hard to come by. A startup in Massachusetts plan to launch a solar shopping portal that it hopes will make solar shopping far less painful.
Will the combination of Kickstarter-style crowd-funding and low risk investing lead to a disruptive new form of financing for the world’s solar projects. With some good execution and marketing, I think so.
While opportunities abound for solar installers, marketers and service companies, the companies that make solar wafers, cells and panels will face an ugly crunch in 2013. There will be 70 percent less of these firms by the end of 2013, according to a report.
In less than a day, startup Solar Mosaic says its first publicly available solar roof projects have been 100 percent funded. Can crowd-funding revolutionize solar?
Who wants to make money off of solar roofs? Startup Solar Mosaic is making that possible starting Monday morning, when California and New York residents can put money into solar projects and, the company says, earn a 4.5 percent annual return. Kind of like a mutual fund.
Can bacteria that live at the bottom of the ocean provide secrets for how to boost the efficiency of solar panels? Certain bacteria can use photosynthesis to harvest 100 percent of the trace amounts of light they encounter.
Following one of the only successful cleantech IPOs of the year, solar installer and financier SolarCity says it will grow its solar rooftops next year to 250 MW, up from 156 MW in 2012. Can it achieve profitability at the same time?
Boom — the numbers for cleantech VC investing in 2012 are out and they ain’t pretty. A cleantech cliff of sorts has arrived and represents an end of an era. If you still want to be in the space in 2013, here’s 5 things you should avoid.
Solar panels that can be integrated right into roofs and walls could provide a bright spot in a difficult solar market over the next five years, according to a new report from Pike Research.
Tesla’s solar-powered super chargers — which can charge Model S cars in 30 minutes — have officially hit the east coast. Last week Tesla announced it had installed two fast chargers, one in Connecticut and one in Delaware.
From low silicon and solar module prices to a rising amount of solar panels installed on rooftops, these five charts show that the future of solar is brighter than ever, despite the difficult times for solar manufacturers in 2012.
Amidst rampant solar manufacturing bankruptcies, thin film solar startup Stion has raised a $25 million equity round, of a planned $55 million round. At the same time the company is cutting costs and laid off a small amount of workers.
At the close of the NASDAQ on Thursday evening, SolarCity ended its first day of trading up close to 50 percent, closing at $11.79.
You can count GigaOM Pro cleantech analyst Adam Lesser in the category that believes that SolarCity pricing at $8 rather than the $13 to $15 the company wanted was a major blessing. A blessing for all of cleantech.
While we follow how SolarCity’s stock fares on its opening debut at $8 per share, here’s some photos of the company ringing in the opening of the NASDAQ.
While the $8 per share debut price for SolarCity is well below the expected range of $13 to $15 per share days ago, the IPO is still moving forward, and was only delayed by a day. SolarCity’s stock is expected to start trading on Thursday.
By 2017, solar modules could cost below 50 cents to produce, says Lux. They are as low as 70 cents per watt now. The cost will drop partly because of manufacturing efficiencies, but also because of the efficiencies of the modules themselves.
In a new filing SolarCity says it plans to sell 11.5 million shares at $8 per share, well below its previous range of $13 – $15 per share. However the IPO seems to be still moving, and only slipped past its original deadline to price Tuesday night.
While it’s unclear why SolarCity delayed pricing and going public tomorrow, it could be because it wasn’t able to price its shares in the expected range of $13 to $15 that it wanted.
The lack of greentech hardware success stories points to a potentially missing piece of the puzzle: a Samsung-style intense focus on manufacturing.
After slow sales in Israeli — the first test bed and flagship market — Better Place is laying off hundreds of employees. The company is struggling with losses as it figures out how to make Israelis want to sign up for electric car charging like a cell phone service.
Selling solar panels and projects into China is notoriously tricky for American solar makers — the market is already flooded with low cost Chinese solar panels, and domestic suppliers seem to carry favor. What’s the answer? Baby steps: joint ventures and pilots seem like the way to go.
The latest in cleantech from GigaOM Pro this week: advanced battery technologies, the fate of clean energy post election, and should the U.S. aggressively export natural gas?
Do data centers that run on clean power seem like pipe dreams? Not when companies hit the massive scales of webscale computing. Execs creating business models from green data centers say that it’s the large size of the projects that makes clean power attractive.
For the first time Google has purchased wind power to directly power a data center in Oklahoma. Previously Google has invested hundreds of millions of dollars into clean power projects, but had yet to power its data centers directly with clean power.
A TV station in North Carolina snapped these still video clips of the solar farm being built next to Apple’s data center. It looks like it’s getting close to being completed.
An underwater swimming solar robot FTW! Courtesy of AeroVironment.
The more sunlight a solar cell can convert into electricity, the cheaper the solar power. Companies like IBM are turning to new materials to try to break efficiency barriers for solar cells.
Silicon Valley solar startup AQT Solar is the latest thin film solar company to struggle: the company is reportedly looking to sell its assets. Just earlier this year the company raised more funding and planned to make 30 MW of its solar cells by mid year.
Startups that are developing off grid clean power devices are turning to Kickstarter to kick start production. The latest is Peppermint Energy, which has created a “utility in a box” solar device.
In India, like in the United States, the power sector is the single largest user of water – more than agriculture. Presuming that India could solve its power problems and build more coal, they would run out of fresh water even faster.
As the world demands more clean energy, will North Carolina — and its power that largely comes from coal and nuclear — continue to attract these types of data center deals? Or will areas that can provide more grid-connected clean power win out?
Finally the worlds of big data geeks and clean energy nerds have collided. Researchers have proposed building a “GreenHadoop,” that is a version of the MapReduce programming framework that could manage a data center’s computing workload to optimize clean energy from a solar system.
A startup called GELI, lead by battery guru Ryan Wartena, has developed an operating system and software for grid batteries and plans to launch its beta software in the coming weeks. Think of it like the Android for energy.
Greenpeace’s main concern for where Internet companies build their data centers is clean power. But data center builders actually think more about the cost of the energy than how clean the source is, and they also think about the volatility of the price and supply.
Buried in last week’s catfight between Apple and Greenpeace over the energy sourcing for Apple’s new North Carolina data center and how clean it would be, was a surprising fact — that the conversation between Apple and Greenpeace was happening at all.
It looks like the end times are near for U.S. support for cleantech, at least according to a report out from the Breakthrough Institute, the Brookings Institution and the World Resources Institute.
In the wake of one of the world’s largest nuclear power disasters in history last year in Japan, the country is re-thinking its energy policy and looking to provide incentives to boost clean power starting this July. Our charticle:
A new report out of the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Labs says that the $9 billion clean power cash grant program (formally called the 1603 grant program), which expired at the end of 2011, was actually working and creating jobs and economic output.
Education about energy is crucial for smarter decision making, which is why I’m excited that the Energy Literacy document, created by the DOE and many others, is finally out.
Royal Dutch Shell CEO, Peter Voser, says energy efficiency technology is a must-have to help feed a world with a growing appetite for energy, but the same can’t be say for alternative energy sources such as wind and solar.
There’s a massive cleantech opportunity right now in Japan, and one small way to commemorate those who lost their lives in Fukushima is to create safe and renewable sources of energy fed into a reliable grid infrastructure.
Professor Tom Murphy lays out his rosy vision for what he thinks the world could accomplish in the near term to maximize the chances of coming out shiny and happy on the tail end of the fossil fuel saga.
Solar panel projects only started to vie for California utilities’ interest in 2007, yet the tech is set to become the largest piece of renewable energy in the state in less than a decade. Check out our charts:
Professor Tom Murphy looks at a future that will inevitably be dependent on fossil fuels for quite some time. What does this future look like?
Professor Tom Murphy crunches the numbers for nuclear fusion power, and dissects its potential and problems.
As a result of the bankruptcies of Solyndra and Beacon Power, the Department of Energy’s Loan Guarantee Program is now under heavy scrutiny. But a new Bloomberg report digs into the numbers and finds the program is a lot more successful than it has seemed.
When it comes to cleantech investing, we’re in the early innings of a long ball game. The last in a 4-part series from Venrock’s Matthew Nordan.
MIT Tech Review’s annual list looking at 35 innovators under 35 always has gems for the energy sectors. This year’s list is no different and the publication highlights three under-the-radar entrepreneurs at startups including ultracapacitor company FastCAP, geothermal drilling startup Foro Energy and battery company Wuhe.
Half of successful VC-backed cleantech start-ups stumble along the way. Entrepreneurs who raise big financing rounds at sky-high valuations can end up shooting themselves in the foot.
Morgan Solar, a startup whose technology uses optics to boost solar cells’ power output, said Tuesday it’s lined up $9.8 million to commercialize is technology.
There’s a widespread perception that cleantech venture capital must be tanking compared with VC overall. That perception is wrong.
When people think about cleantech, they typically think about solar panels or converting biomass into fuel. But the momentum right now in cleantech is as much about connectivity and how it can drive energy efficiency as it is about advancing sources of renewable energy.
Concentrating solar photovoltaics use optics to concentrate sunlight onto solar cells to boost energy production. While the tech is still in an early stage, some startups are looking to ramp up, like Fremont, Calif.-based Solaria, which has raised another $30 million.
Plenty of late-stage financing will be available for cleantech start-ups over the next few years, but seed/Series A money is another matter.
Despite that Google is ending its efforts to reduce the cost of clean power below coal, we’ve actually made it there. And clean power entrepreneur Jigar Shah says to Google: Thank you for pioneering this, and it’s time to declare it a victory!
Google is officially shutting down its own in-house research initiative and equity investing focus on lowering the cost of clean power, called Renewable Energy Cheaper than Coal, or RE
Vineeth Vijayaraghavan is the founder and editor of a site focused on cleantech in India, Panchabuta, and here’s what he’s been watching, reading, and writing about this week:
If we adopt solar and wind as major components of our energy infrastructure, we have to solve the energy storage problem in a big way. Here, we will take a peek at pumped hydro and evaluate what it can do for us.
The article this weekend on the front page of The New York Times, “A Gold Rush of Subsidies in the Search for Clean Energy,” clearly underscores why the U.S. should phase-out all permanent and long-term subsidies for energy.
There will soon be enough solar projects globally to drive economies of scale to reach our Pearl Harbor moment in solar. That moment won’t be the end, but will start the first war for control of the power sector in 100 years.
We need smart government but we have limited funds for incentives, so we have to focus on our core strengths. For us that is innovation and deployment, particularly for solar.
Looks like Groupon will go public on Friday morning at $20 per share, giving it a valuation of $12.6 billion for its online coupon business. Let’s compare it to some of the greentech startups and big energy firms and try not to get disturbed.
Solar manufacturers have been on supercharged expansion mode over the past five years in order to cut costs and solar prices. But to continue that march at this point is just unwise. First Solar is now putting off bringing online a solar panel factory in Vietnam.
Facebook officially announced the data center that it’s building in the chilly climate of Lulea, Sweden, and it’s going to be powered “primarily from renewables.” No, not solar or wind but hydropower (water and dams), which is still the cheapest kind of clean power.
In contrast to the politicization of solar in the U.S., India is quickly moving to install 20 GW of solar by 2022. Vineeth Vijayaraghavan is the founder of Panchabuta, a site focused on Indian cleantech. Here’s what he’s been watching, reading, and writing about this week.
Introducing crowd sourcing meets solar, with a kick. Startup Solar Mosaic has built a Kickstarter-style platform that is bringing together peer-to-peer lenders that want to make loans for solar projects in underserved communities, and plans to one day offer ways to make money from solar.
Are there still opportunities for tech innovation for solar cells, now that solar panels are rapidly becoming commoditized? California startup Silevo thinks it has a shot with a hybrid solar cell design and a plan to build its first factory in China.
Our GigaOM Pro Green IT analyst Adam Lesser points out that U.S. solar manufacturers are preparing a complaint against China to be filed with the Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission.
The second congressional hearing on what happened with solar maker Solyndra concluded this morning, and Solyndra’s CEO and CFO aren’t talking. Right after CEO Brian Harrison and CFO Bill Stover were sworn in, they invoked their fifth amendment rights.
A new Y Combinator–style incubator that will focus solely on the intersection of energy and information technology is launching in Houston, the founder of the group, Kirk Brand Coburn, told me in an exclusive interview.
Google has just revealed its total electricity use for the first time and says it plans to have about a third of the electricity it consumes be sourced directly from clean power by 2012.
Internet companies are in a unique position to consume, promote, educate and get involved with clean power. Not only by directly buying it to run their power-hungry servers, but also through their intimate access to millions of Internet users.
Solar project developer BrightSource Energy isn’t close to completing it first solar power plant, but it’s already getting the ball rolling on its second project, which will use a taller tower and is a more efficient use of the land.
Going solar is an expensive undertaking, so homeowners are often eager to know whether solar adds value to their homes and if they can recoup some of the investment when they sell their homes.
The California Energy Commission on Wednesday filed a complaint against a wind turbine maker, contending that the company has exaggerated the performance of its equipment and caused the commission to overpay in rebates.
After investing in batteries, wireless tech, and electric car innovation, the venture arm of GM is now turning to solar car ports. On Thursday GM Ventures announced that it has invested $7.5 million into Sunlogics, a company that makes canopies covered in solar panels.
Solar-panel prices are falling fast, and that is putting enormous pressure on manufacturers to boost their solar gear’s efficiency. First Solar feels the pressure, too, and on Tuesday boasted a world-record solar cell at 17.3 percent efficiency.
Is the answer to helping integrate solar and wind into the power grid the humble home hot water heater? That’s one of the things that startup GridMobility is looking to find out.
A startup offering Groupon-style group discounts for solar panel roof installations is now looking to connect with potential solar customers nationwide.
The network of the smart grid is taking its sweet time to get deployed, but we still need smart applications to run over these networks once they are fully installed. Here are five smart-grid startups to watch via the Cleantech Open.
Intersolar is one of the largest solar conference in the U.S. and is being held in San Francisco this week. Here’s 25 photos I snapped at the event while wandering around the show floors.
Electronics that can break out of their rigid boxes, and be embedded into stretchy, even wearable, materials — that’s the goal of startup mc10, which packages up semiconductors, like silicon, so they can bend, twist and wrap around other structures.
Startup EnerVault is getting closer to commercializing its flow battery, which uses large liquid tanks of chemicals to store energy. The Silicon Valley company will be building a demonstration project next year to help launch the technology into the market in 2013.
Is combining solar cells and windows a case of chocolate and peanut butter (perfect combo) or one of those unions which equals less than the sum of its parts? Startup Pythagoras Solar has designed — and is selling — a double-pane window embedded with solar cells.
Enphase Energy, which makes solar microinverters, is in the process of raising $51.5 million according to a filing. The company filed the fund-raising form just a week after it announced it’s aiming for a $100 million IPO.
Google has emerged as one of the most aggressive clean power investors in 2011, and has now invested over $780 million into clean power projects and technologies. The latest funding is another $102 million into a wind farm being built in Southern California’s Mojave Desert.
Alta Devices has garnered high-profile investors, but it’s been fairly quiet about the tech it’s developed to bring in those investors. But after chatting with Alta’s CEO, Christopher Norris, we have a lot better idea on its innovation. Here’s the story behind Alta Devices.
Adding more clean power to the grid will require utilities to redesign the network that transports solar electricity locally. Southern California Edison on Monday laid out its plan to make its distribution grid more responsive to the fluctuating infusion of solar electricity throughout the day.
SunReports has launched a Facebook app that displays how much power your home solar system is generating. Monitoring solar systems can make sure solar panels are working right, while solar installers are hoping that showing off solar systems via social networks will lead to more sales.
Solar company BrightSource says it employs between 60 and 100 biologists at any time to make sure animals in the desert surrounding its inaugural solar plant Ivanpah are unharmed. A group of environmentalists have been protesting the plant, and part of the construction was temporarily halted.
Solar rooftops only work in specific environments — an area with enough sun, or a roof with the right tilt — and a company called Geostellar is using big data tools to help its solar installer customers deliver more solar in places where it actually makes economic sense.
What’s going on with a 709 MW solar project planned for the Imperial Valley in Southern California? We just learned from San Diego Gas & Electric’s spokesman, Art Larson, that the utility canceled its contract to buy power from the project.
Concentrating solar photovoltaic technology hasn’t always gotten a lot of respect, but it’s getting more attention these days thanks to government aid and a few well-known players and projects. In fact the technology could see 1 GW of power projects installed by 2015.
Three-year-old startup GTherm has a new approach to tapping the Earth’s heat for power generation at sites where conventional geothermal technologies fall short. The company says it can do it for less cost, and through a safer method, than competing systems.
Natural gas power plants aren’t usually all that efficient. On Wednesday, GE announced a power plant design that’s more efficient than the standard and also allows plant operators to better manage supply and demand and integrate clean power with natural gas.
Applied Materials had a blockbuster quarter in its solar business in the most recent quarter, but its dim market outlook points reflects changes that aren’t good for manufacturers but great for project developers.
Mark down yet another clean power project that Google plans to back. This morning, Google announced that it’s providing $55 million for part of the construction of a 1.5 GW wind farm being built by Terra-Gen Power in Southern California’s Mojave Desert.
We can’t get enough of companies using smart algorithms and data management to make the power grid run more smoothly and to promote energy efficiency. Viridity Energy is a great example and watch my video interview with Viridity Energy SVP Laura Manz.
The East Coast offshore wind farm backbone that made headlines when Google announced it had become an investor, has now passed a key regulatory hurdle, though there are many more hurdles ahead.
Looks like PG&E is finally giving up on wave power, for the time being. PG&E’s spokesman Denny Boyles tells KQED that it has essentially abandoned the wave power projects it had been researching, including pilot projects and permits for three areas along the California coast.
Here’s 10 questions with former Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham — who led the DOE 2001 to 2005 and was nominated by George W Bush — on his thoughts on the future of energy innovation, nuclear power in the U.S., the energy moves of the current administration:
A new report says the U.S. needs to spend $12 billion to $16 billion a year on new transmission lines, which could support 130,000 to 250,000 jobs annually. But how to cut through all the red tape?
Solar companies know what to blame for their weak first quarterly financials this year: Italy and the country’s revision of its solar subsidies. Solar bellwether SunPower this afternoon, announced a quarterly loss of $2.12 million ($0.02 loss per share).
Swiss power gear company ABB has made another investment in tech that can make data centers more energy-efficient: ABB has acquired controlling interest in Validus DC Systems, a company that makes power systems for data centers that utilize direct current (DC).
To solve the world’s energy problems and combat a rise in global warming, the solutions need to be dramatic and powerful. And definitely not cute. That’s the blunt assessment of Bill Gates, who dismissed smaller scale technologies like residential solar installations as being “cute” but ineffective.
California is home to the U.S. solar industry, and it will continue to be. Of the roughly 2 gigawatts of installed domestic solar photovoltaic capacity, half of it is in California. But the industry is spreading out. — to the other coast.
While many of the next-gen thin film solar companies are in a make-or-break stage of ramping up to high volume production, a good deal of these companies don’t seem to have much trouble finding customers. Nanosolar says its scored a 1 GW deal with European utilities.
Reuters reports that the beleaguered Japanese utility that owns the nuclear reactors at Fukushima, Tokyo Electric Power Company, plans to start treating contaminated water at its reactors with technology from stealthy startup Kurion, Toshiba, Hitachi-GE Nuclear Energy, and Areva.
Solyndra’s factory is now set to produce 200 MW of its tube-shaped solar panels annually, and the company hopes to boost that to 300 MW by 2013. Ramping that up will take another round of funding. Here are my photos of the factory tour:
Facebook didn’t exactly meet Greenpeace’s Earth Day challenge, which called for the social network giant to pledge to cut out coal as an energy source for its data centers. But Facebook did respond in a letter, in which the company said it would do more.
After five years and a $330 million investment, NRG Energy announced early last week that it will no longer fund its nuclear expansion project in Texas. Crane said at Green:Net event on Thursday that failing quickly and cheaply “is something that we have failed to do.”
The biggest cleantech news of last week hit the wires late afternoon on Friday: Solar thermal developer BrightSource Energy filed for a $250 million IPO. Here’s the nitty-gritty of BrightSource’s financials, PPAs, and partner deals, via BrightSource’s S-1 by the numbers:
Does a solar electric system add to the sales value of a home? The Berkeley Lawrence National Laboratory decided to answer this question, and the result is a report being issued Thursday that showed that, indeed, solar homes command higher prices.
Google announced that it has made its second deal via its subsidiary Google Energy, and the search engine giant plans to buy 100 MW of power from a wind farm that’s under construction in Oklahoma.
Today, at our third-annual Green:Net event, we’re looking at digital energy: how technology can reduce energy consumption and help the environment. The livestream begins at 8:25 PT, and we’ll update this post throughout the day with the liveblogs from the event.
A group of the Internet’s most recognized brands — from Facebook to Apple to Twitter to Amazon — have received failing grades when it comes to using clean power for their web services, according to a new report unveiled by Greenpeace on Thursday at our Green:Net event.
On the day before Earth Day (tomorrow!), the place to be is: Green:Net 2011! Our third annual Green:Net event, which focuses on digital energy and how information technology can be used to create a green economy, kicks off tomorrow bright and early.
NRG Energy says it will be providing no more money for the development of its nuclear expansion project, the South Texas Project units 3&4, and will be recording a first quarter 2011 pretax charge of about $481 million.
Google’s investments in clean power are now rivaling that of stand alone clean energy investors. The search engine giant has invested $100 million in the world’s largest wind farm under construction in Oregon. With this investment, Google has put more than $350 million into clean power.
Rare earth mining company Molycorp has made another acquisition, and yes, its shares are even higher than when we last covered the company earlier this month. Molycorp has acquired Santoku America, based in Tolleson, Ariz., from Japanese firm Santoku Corporation, for $17.5 million.
Turns out Facebook has been eying clean power after all for its new data center. Well, a very small amount of solar compared to the sizable power needs of its data center. According to Data Center Knowledge, Facebook has built a 100 kW solar panel array.
Greenpeace has hit a new record with its Facebook “unfriend coal” campaign: a Guinness World Record for how many comments a single Facebook post has received in a 24-hour period. Greenpeace will also unveil a report on clean power and the cloud at Green:Net 2011.
Want to see history in the making? I shot this 30-second video of California Governor Jerry Brown signing a bill into law that requires utilities to source 33 percent of their electricity from clean power by 2020.
It was a union of sorts between federal, state and industry initiatives, culminating in a day that will be remembered in solar power history. DOE Chief Steven Chu, California Governor Jerry Brown and SunPower executives announced a series of key solar projects. Here’s my photos:
A rooftop at Santa Clara University is now home to a next-generation solar technology. Specifically the university has commissioned a solar concentrating photovoltaic project — which uses both mirrors to concentrate sunlight and also solar cells — from startup Chromasun.
On Tuesday afternoon, California Governor Jerry Brown is widely expected to sign a bill into law which says utilities in the state need to produce 33 percent of their electricity from clean sources by the end of 2020.
Looks like Google’s wind power investments last year aren’t its last clean energy bets. On Thursday afternoon Google announced that it will invest €3.5 million ($5 million USD) into a solar photovoltaic farm in Brandenburg an der Havel, Germany, which is near Berlin.
The mystery’s over. GE apparently is serious about building a thin film solar business and the New York Times is reporting that GE plans to announce on Thursday that it will build a factory to produce 400 MW worth of thin film solar panels per year.
Will your local utility one day go the way of dinosaurs? As more home and business owners install solar panels, wind turbines and other electricity and heat generating equipment, the roles of the utilities will change and new business opportunities will rise.
A quick scan of the top cleantech deals for the near record first quarter, sent cold shivers up my spine. The deals may be getting done, but are we sure investors are making money? Three of the biggest deals represented 17 percent of the quarter’s dollars.
A solar farm using concentrating solar photovoltaic technology, which combines mirrors and solar PV cells, was just completed in Hanford, Calif. at the Nichols Farms. It’s a 1 MW solar project, using technology from SolFocus, and built by Bechtel. Check out the photos:
The United Nations has opted to use Microsoft’s green pre-fab “data center in a box” technology for its new office in Nairobi. The technology can reduce the energy costs associated with the data center and will help the U.N. make its new Nairobi office energy neutral.
Will Facebook rise to Green Peace’s challenge to pledge to cut coal from its data centers by Earth Day on April 22? On the day before Earth Day, on April 21 at Green:Net 2011, Green Peace will discuss its challenge, and unveil some new data.
Renewable energy is enjoying a rising profile at the expense of nuclear power. But nuclear power producers and technology developers aren’t necessary the losers there. Some of them have been snapping up solar and wind companies and power plant projects, and the trend will continue.
What would lead a company to walk away from negotiations for a coveted federal loan guarantee, as solar company Suniva did recently? It has to do with the terms of the government deals, the time it takes to obtain one, and the recovery of private markets.
Power company NRG Energy is bracing itself for the possible situation that Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) could pull out of an investment in NRG’s planned expansion of its South Texas nuclear plant, in the wake of TEPCO’s nuclear disaster in Japan.
Researchers are already predicting how the nuclear disaster in Japan will affect the nuclear industry. According to Mark Cooper, a senior fellow at Vermont Law School’s Institute for Energy and Environment, construction costs of nuclear reactors are likely to soar for awhile.
Solar equipment installers and manufacturers have pointed out for some time now the hassles of dealing with disparate permitting rules and costs from one city or county to the next. A new report highlights this challenge in Colorado, where a bill is pending to cap fees.
Enphase Energy has made a name for itself as a trailblazer of the microinverter market. But keeping that lead won’t be easy, and the company is launching a series of new products that are smaller and lighter and more tailored for different customer types.
General Electric has shown no lack of ambition to be a big player in the solar energy market, but how well it’s doing developing cadmium-telluride (CdTe)-based technology — and become a major CdTe solar panel makers — remains a bit of a mystery
No one actively cheers for climate change, air pollution, and extreme weather events, which are all caused, in part, by generating energy from fossil fuels. But no one really wants to another key piece of the solution: the invoice.
Some 130 clean power and energy efficiency companies have already signed up to use Wattbot — a San Francisco-based startup developing a…
Just four graphs into President Obama’s address this weekend, in which he highlights the importance of the recently passed stimulus bill, he…