Monthly Archives: April 2009

First Solar profit jumps as costs fall

solarEarlier this week, I shared the news of profits and growth in the wind industry. And yesterday, a key solar company reported outstanding profits as well. First Solar reduced its manufacturing cost per watt more than Continue reading

1st Quarter Wind Power Growth Breaks Record!

wind-farmI braced myself for the American Wind Energy Association’s quarterly report, thinking the sinking economy would lead to slower wind deployment in the US. But then I got the just-released report, and they showed another record wind deployment for the first quarter! The US added Continue reading

Biggest Wind Utility Grows Profit Amid Downturn

floridamapWhile many companies are reporting lower profits here in 2009, Florida Power & Light shared a profit increase of 46% above the first quarter of 2008. And it was no coincidence that it is the nation’s largest wind power producer. The company made $364 million and Continue reading

Kansas Wind May Power Graceland

wind-farm We’ve all heard of Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) within states, directives that at least a chosen percentage of a state’s electricity be provided by renewable energy sources. Goals range from 25% renewables in NY by 2013 to 12.5% in NC by 2015. But the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) presented today that Kansas would reap great benefits from a 200% RPS, giving Continue reading

Celebrating Earth Day & Solar Progress at Hunter College

solarToday I will be speaking to environmental leaders throughout the City University of New York (CUNY) system, an institution that teaches almost half a million students on 23 campuses. We will be at the Hunter College campus here in the Upper East Side celebrating Earth Day and inspiring each other to do more to achieve environmental sustainability. The event was organized by Continue reading

US Electricity Emissions in Freefall

power-linesThe Energy Information Administration (EIA) US electric power estimates for January and February just came out. And the numbers are dramatic. Net generation in January was down ~3.3% from January 2008, largely on lower demand from industrial users. February showed an even greater ~6.9% nosedive in Continue reading

US Solar Industry Growing in 2009: Whole Foods and Wal-Mart Step Up

earthdayWith bulging inventories of oil and a global economy set to shrink for the first time since World War II, it’s hard to imagine great short-term growth prospects for solar and other renewable energy sources. But generous governmental support, a bit of private leadership, and a backlog of demand from 2008 have kept the industry Continue reading

Transition from Coal- to Solar-powered cell phones this summer

sharp_solar_phone_inline_180iPhones and Blackberries are becoming the gateway to the world for millions of people now. And of course these tech devices take a chunk of electricity to perform. So any chance to provide that power from solar electricity could be a big step in the Sustainable Energy Transition. Sharp just announced that its first solar-powered cell phone will be released Continue reading

The Vatican Goes Solar

vaticanOnly a few days after Roman Catholic Easter, the tradition’s faith leaders announced a plan to care for God’s Creation by harvesting energy from sunlight. Solar photovoltaic (PV) power exists in a small scale all over the world, from arrays less than 1 kW to a couple dozen MW. But the Holy See just announced that they intend to build what would today be the world’s biggest solar PV system at Continue reading