April 24, 2018
A federal appeals court has rejected the Trump administration's attempt to delay penalties for automakers that fail to meet fuel efficiency standards. Legal experts say other attempts by the administration to weaken the standards may also be at risk.
Two solar developers are accusing DTE Energy of stonewalling attempts to build renewable energy in the utility's Michigan territory. The solar companies say DTE is not providing basic information, leading to unnecessary delays.
GE Renewable Energy and the British government-funded Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult have reached a five-year agreement to test GE's giant new 12 megawatt turbine off the UK coast. The largest turbines currently in operation are about 9 megawatts.
Accelerating without its distinctive growl, a new Ferrari will run with a hybrid motor and makes almost no noise. The model is being tested and likely will be presented to the public later this year.
In photos and video, The New York Times follows the growth of the modern wind power industry from early Danish entrepreneurs to the giant offshore wind turbines being built today.
April 23, 2018
A ruling by state regulators on solar rooftop leasing is opening up a potentially huge market in Florida, a state whose rules were previously unclear about whether solar companies such as Sunrun could offer leases without being regulated as a utility.
A bipartisan plan in Congress aims to reverse the Trump administration's tariffs on imported solar equipment. The Protecting Solar Jobs Act is being proposed at a time when the tariffs are being challenged in court and before the World Trade Organization.
A 200-megawatt solar array announced for North Dakota would be the largest in the state. The developer, Geronimo Energy of Minneapolis, does not yet have buyers for the electricity.
Belgium is doubling the offshore area that is available for wind energy development. The government announcement is tied to the country's plan to come up with new power sources to replace nuclear plants that are on track to close.
April 20, 2018
Investor confidence in solar power is rising, leading to a drop in borrowing costs for some projects even though interest rates are otherwise rising. The upshot is that banks are willing to take a smaller cut of solar projects.
A new report underscores that even as Republican leaders remain resistant, if not outright hostile, to action on climate change, their states and districts are adopting renewable energy at some of the fastest rates in the country.
In formal comments related to President Trump's solar tariffs, the Solar Energy Industries Association says it has heard from 18 U.S. solar companies that plan to cut jobs or are canceling investments. The tariff impact isn't yet reflected in official data, and state-level policies are also having an impact, as PV Magazine explains.
Illinois regulators are beginning a study of the benefits of distributed generation such as rooftop solar, a move that is happening sooner than expected because of strong interest from residents and businesses. The state is increasing support for solar as part of a 2016 energy law.
Factory delays and dwindling cash are leading to a growing realization that Tesla may be running out of time. The company that has long been a darling of investors needs to get back on the right track, and soon.
April 18, 2018
The American Wind Energy Association reports that wind installations were down in 2017 compared to the prior year, due in part to a building cycle that is tied to tax incentives. Builders set their schedules to qualify for the federal incentive, which led to a rush to build in 2016 and a dropoff in 2017.
A three-year review of the economic impacts of the northeast's Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) found $1.4 billion in economic benefits across the nine states participating in the carbon cap-and-trade system, no harm to the reliability of the electric grid, and long-term benefits for residents.
New Mexico's total operating wind-energy capacity grew by 51 percent last year, the highest growth rate in the nation, according to the American Wind Energy Association. That growth is likely to continue, as several large projects are planned.
Google and Apple are leading the way, and many others are following, as large U.S. businesses invest heavily in renewable energy. The corporate embrace of renewables has continued and even accelerated during the Trump administration.
After getting little traction with state lawmakers, a coalition of clean-energy advocates has shifted its focus to lobbying utility companies to carry out a plan to double the state's wind power, increase its solar energy and reduce electricity use over the next five years.
Cornell University researchers are developing a system that uses weather radar to detect large groups of migrating birds, information that can be given to wind-farm operators to help reduce bird deaths.
April 17, 2018
Researchers working on a 50-megawatt wind turbine say the design was inspired by palm trees that can withstand intense winds. The offshore turbine design, which they plan to start testing this summer in Colorado, would be many times larger than the largest currently on the market. Read more from ICN on how wind farms are repowering with new technology.
The Wyoming Public Service Commission and Rocky Mountain Power have agreed on a plan that would add 1,150 megawatts of wind power at three wind farms. It's a key step for the project to move forward. The utility dropped plans for a fourth wind farm as part of the deal.
Tesla is stopping production of its Model 3 for a few days to try to fix some automation problems that have slowed work on the highly anticipated sedan, designed to be Tesla's lowest-cost electric car.
Duke Energy customers in North Carolina can soon sign up for solar rebates related to a 2017 state law. The $62 million program includes residents and businesses and would cover some of the costs for installing solar power systems.
April 16, 2018
Community colleges and a high school in southwest Texas are starting programs to train workers for the wind industry. School officials hope to point students toward the high pay and rapid growth in wind energy jobs. Read more from ICN about the climate change views of Texans training for wind industry jobs.
A solar power advocacy group will make its case before the North Carolina Supreme Court this week in a dispute over whether the utility Duke Energy can stop customers from installing solar. The group, NC WARN, put solar panels on a Greensboro church, and then got fined by regulators, leading to this case.
Elon Musk is shooting back at critics who say Tesla's finances are dire, tweeting this weekend that his company will post a profit in the third and fourth quarters this year. He is trying to overcome production delays in the Model 3, the sedan that could make or break Tesla.
Utility customers in Omaha, Nebraska, will soon be able to buy shares of solar power. The program is being introduced by a publicly owned utility, with each share, estimated to be about $2 per month, said to offset about 10 percent of the average customer's electricity use.
Ola, a ride-hailing firm in India, says it's adding 10,000 electric vehicles to its fleet in the next 12 months. The three-wheel vehicles are part of a more ambitious goal also just announced: It plans to have 1 million electric vehicles by 2021.
April 12, 2018
Recurrent Energy wants to build a solar farm with a 350 megawatt battery storage project in the California desert. It would be three times the size of Tesla's biggest battery in Australia, which is currently the world's largest.