U.S. Okays 1,100 MW of Renewable Energy Project
The U.S. approved three renewable- energy projects to be built on California and Nevada. Two solar farms and one wind project are expected to generate 1,100 megawatts of capacity -enough to power 340,000 homes. The U.S. doubled its renewable energy use during the past four years as these projects are part of the Obama administration’s strategy of promoting wider use of green energy on federal lands. The solar farms are in one of 17 zones approved by the Interior Department. The Interior Department has approved 37 utility-scale renewable energy projects on federal land since 2009 that may power more than 3.8 million homes.
Support Impartial Access to Solar Energy
The California Public Utilities Commission offers solar rebate programs designed for low-income homes in California. The Single-family Affordable Solar Homes program (SASH), along with the Multifamily Affordable Solar Housing Program (MASH), was put in place with California Assembly Bill 2723. This law allocates a minimum of 10 percent of the funds from the California Solar Initiative to help qualified low-income households access solar energy. The SASH Program gives low-income homeowners up-front rebates for solar installs. If AB 217 becomes law, it will require the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to adopt this program, which would be funded by ratepayers inside the territories of the San Diego Gas and Electric, Southern California Edison, and Pacific Gas and Electric.
China Seeking Solar Consolidation Dampens Hope for Suntech
Advisers to government agencies said that China will not rescue Suntech Power Holdings Co. from its creditors because the former biggest solar-panel maker needs to retrench along with the rest of the industry. Li Junfeng, of the National Development and Reform Commission said that Officials in Beijing want to trim excess manufacturing capacity and consolidate the $25 billion global industry. According to some experts, Suntech’s best recourse would be to file for bankruptcy for some assets and let a state-owned power enter to protect certain interests.
New Solar Installs in Israel to Significantly Increase Installed Capacity
This week, construction has begun in Israel on five solar PV projects in the Arava and Negev deserts. When finished, the project should generate a total of 35-MW. Siemens Israel, which have also partnered with Arava Power to build the first Photo-voltaic field in the country, is the main contractor. And JA Solar will be supplying 123,000 of its high-efficiency poly-crystalline modules. These projects are expected to come online this summer, all with signed power purchase agreements with the Israel Electric Company.