When Donald Trump tapped Texas Governor Rick Perry to lead the U.S. Department of Energy, many critics were quick to respond. We were reminded of the time when, during one of his own unsuccessful presidential bids, Gov. Perry vowed to eliminate the DOE, then forgot its name on national television. It has also been pointed out that he does not come with the same scientific expertise as former DOE heads; for example, his BS in Animal Science does not quite
This month, the Department of Energy released the “U.S. Energy and Employment Report”, an annual report that highlights employment data and trends for each of the energy sectors. While the report concedes that the solar industry employment data is difficult to measure, it suggests that the solar industry may have added 73,000 jobs in the past year, bringing total solar jobs to 373,000. To put this into perspective; the same DOE report puts U.S. coal jobs at roughly 86,000, total.
In February, the fate of the Clean Power Plan (CPP) was put into question when the Supreme Court put a stay on the rule, pending a judicial review. With the upcoming administration change, the question mark has grown. On December 28, those of us in Virginia learned bit about where our leadership stands when Attorney General Mark Herring affixed his name to an open letter to Donald Trump, urging him to “continue the federal government’s defense of the Clean Power
Our friend Karen Schaufeld, Powered by Facts, published the following open letter in support of solar electricity. Powered by Facts, MDV-SEIA (the regional solar trade association) and the electric utilities have spent the last eight months developing a consensus view on a broad range of issues impacting the deployment of solar energy in Virginia. SolUnesco has supported this process and supports the Bills forthcoming from this process.
On Wednesday we presented at the Virginia Association of Assessing Officers (VAAO) Property Assessment Conference (Click here to download presentation). The association and their conferences provide continuing education to the Virginia community of assessors. We believe that maintaining a healthy dialogue with the professionals who determine land values for the purpose of tax assessments serves the solar industry well. Francis Hodsoll, CEO, presented on policies driving national solar markets and their application to the Virginia framework. He also explained the tremendous
States in every corner of the United States are rapidly advancing the community solar market. GreenTech Media has projected that Community Solar will grow faster than any other solar market segment. The NC Clean Energy Technology Center reported in their 2016 50 States of Solar Quarterly Report that seven states adopted, amended, or reviewed rules governing community solar programs within the past year. For example, Minnesota and Maryland have implemented pilot projects that would demonstrate the benefits of community solar to customers.
Last week SolUnesco presented on a panel at Solar Power Southeast in Atlanta, Georgia (Click here to download presentation). The panel focused on the trajectory for solar after the Supreme Court’s Stay on the Clean Power Plan (CPP) including the legal merits of the suit, and the impact on the economics, policy, and market trends. Does the Supreme Court’s Stay mean a slower pace for the development of renewables going forward? One might think so. However, we point to the
Utilities in southern states are evolving towards a renewable future by embracing their solar energy potential and developing beyond federal renewable energy requirements. Major utilities are beginning to step up and procure or build solar without the requirements of a state Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) or other incentives. GTM refers to this market trend as ‘voluntary procurement’ (voluntary procurement is defined as the utility either purchasing the energy and environmental attributes from a third-party or owning the solar power plant).
SolUnesco discusses future of renewable energy at Resilient Virginia and Environment Virginia Symposium
The opportunity for growth in the renewable energy industry is more promising than ever with the combination of the 2014 Clean Power Plan and the 2015 Paris Climate COP 21 agreement. SolUnesco looks to be at the forefront of decarbonizing the current energy system in Virginia by developing large-scale renewable energy projects. Over the last few weeks Francis Hodsoll, SolUnesco President, presented at the Resilient Virginia Conference in Richmond and the VMI Environment Virginia Symposium in Lexington. In both presentations,
More than 100 megawatts of projects hang in the balance in the state. In 2016, Virginia’s solar industry could grow more than 1,000 percent compared with 2015 — a 750 percent increase over all the solar ever deployed in the state. As you digest the Paris climate COP 21 agreement – 195 countries reach agreement to hold temperature increase to below 2 degrees Celsius – how will we achieve this ambitious agreement? Clearly we need to dramatically expand clean energy.