Harvard scientists have found a way to turn solar energy into liquid fuel, by generating hydrogen from photovoltaic cells and then converting that to isopropanol with the use of bacteria, according to research they’ve published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Time reports.
Following legislation last year setting targets for utilities’ solar generation, Duke Energy and South Carolina Electric & Gas have filed plans with the state’s Public Service Commission to add 111 megawatts of solar capacity, in part through solar farms and also by encouraging their customers to generate it or join community solar projects, The Charlotte Observer reports.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Apple will spend nearly $850 million on a solar energy project that will generate enough power for the computer giant's new corporate headquarters, retail stores and other operations in California.
The tech company will be the biggest single consumer of energy from the new solar facility. It is being constructed on 2,900 acres in rural Monterey County, south of the San Francisco Bay Area where Apple is headquartered.
The group Conservatives for Energy Freedom, seeking to raise grassroots support for solar power and claiming backing from the Florida Tea Party, is starting a series of town hall meetings in St. Petersburg Tuesday night and is looking to support a ballot initiative that’s being promoted by libertarians, environmentalists and retailers in the state, the Tampa Bay Times reports.
RIVERSIDE, Calif. (AP) — One of the nation's largest solar projects was dedicated Monday in the Riverside County desert, as California rushes to expand its use of green power to meet the state's renewable energy requirements.
The dedication of the Desert Sunlight Solar Farm comes about a month after Gov. Jerry Brown called on the state to increase renewable electricity use to 50 percent by 2030, up from the current goal of 33 percent by 2020.
Enphase Energy Inc. says it has upgraded around 800,000 smart microinverters installed on rooftop solar units in Hawaii, an operation it says can be performed remotely and is important to better integrating the power generated by the panels into Hawaiian Electric’s grid, Pacific Business News reports.
Solar panels that began operating last week at the MillerCoors brewery in Irwindale, California will provide between 7 and 40 percent of the power needed to run the facility, the San Gabriel Valley Tribune reports – enough energy to produce 7 million cases of beer annually.
Florida Power & Light’s plans to put in solar systems in three different locations, nearly doubling the state’s solar capacity by adding 225 megawatts of generation, shouldn’t result in higher costs for consumers, the company said, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
Having spent $305 million five years ago to purchase the San Francisco-based solar company Recurrent Energy, Sharp Corp. reportedly has found a buyer for the unit above the initial purchase price, sources tell Bloomberg.
The president of Solar Vision has told WOSU public radio that his business has been affected by the state’s move to freeze renewable energy targets, something that the Pew Charitable Trusts’ Clean Energy Initiative had predicted would happen.
Plants would no longer be exempt from air pollution regulations when they’re starting up, shutting down or malfunctioning, under a new regulation from the Environmental Protection Agency, The Hill reports.
A series of major energy and environmental regulations will be published by federal agencies between June and August, including the Environmental Protection Agency’s rules limiting power plant carbon emissions, the Interior Department’s rule protecting streams from mountaintop removal coal mining, and the Obama administration strategy for cutting methane emissions, The Hill reports.
A group of senators - 17 Democrats and Independent Bernie Sanders - has written to Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, asking her to stop Royal Dutch Shell or anyone else from drilling in the Arctic, Reuters reports.
The reaction in Washington to this week’s oil spill off the coast of Santa Barbara has been muted, National Journal reports, despite wishes expressed by environmentalists that the incident generate backing for policies moving the country away from fossil fuels.
A website set up by Sens. James Lankford, R-Okla., and Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., to collect grievances about federal regulation and bureaucracy has received complaints about a wide variety of the Environmental Protection Agency’s pending regulations, E&E reports.
Mississippi electric power cooperatives are backing away from a deal in which they would take 15 percent ownership of the Kemper County coal plant that will use carbon capture technology, because they said the power it generates would end up being too expensive, E&E reports.
A stronger dollar combined with the drop of only 1 oil rig in Baker Hughes’ weekly count sent crude prices sliding Friday. Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude lost 1.6 percent, or $1, to settle at $59.72 a barrel on the Nymex, while in London, Brent was $1.17 , or 1.8 percent, lower, at $65.37, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Standard & Poor’s thinks oil companies that have managed to survive the slide in crude prices by borrowing more money may start running into trouble in the coming months, particularly if the price stays in the $50 range, FuelFix reports.
A new analysis concludes that wells in Mountrail and McKenzie counties in North Dakota’s Bakken Shale are productive enough to remain profitable even with oil prices around $60 a barrel, FuelFix reports.
With oil prices dramatically lower than a year ago, AAA predicts that more than 37 million people will travel more than 50 miles over the Memorial Day weekend - the most since 2005, The New York Times reports.