Solar energy reaches new heights in 2016

Solar Energy Reaches New Milestone

The solar energy industry nearly doubled in size last year In 2016, solar energy in the United States grew at an unprecedented rate. A new report from GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association shows that solar installations doubled last year over what they had been in 2015. The report notes that solar energy accounted for 39% of all new energy generation capacity in the United States last year, breaking previous records and establishing solar as the leading form of clean power in the country. The economics of solar…

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Japan to build world’s largest floating solar energy farm

Solar Energy - Solar Panel Array

Kyocera and Tokyo Leasing Corporation will work together to develop ambitious new project Japan may soon be home to the world’s largest floating solar energy system. The Tokyo Leasing Corporation and Kyocera Corporation have announced plans to develop the massive 13.7 megawatt project. The solar farm will be located in the Yamakura Dam reservoir. Kyocera is already planning to develop a similar project in the Umenokifurukori reservoir, which will have a capacity of 7.5 megawatts. Once the projects are completed, Japan will be home to some of the only floating…

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Solar energy industry employs more people than the coal industry in the US

Solar Energy Industry - Jobs

The solar market continues to show major economic potential The solar energy industry in the United States now offers more jobs than the coal industry, according to a recent survey from Solar Foundation. The solar sector has been growing quickly in the country over the past few years, even outpacing fossil-fuels in terms of new energy generation capacity. Despite this, however, solar only accounts for approximately 1% of all electricity produced within the United States, but the sector represents significant economic potential that is impossible to ignore. Survey highlights the…

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Utilities are showing strong support for renewable energy in the US

Renewable Energy - Support

A growing number of major utilities are entering into the renewable energy space More utilities in the United States are beginning to scramble to embrace renewable energy, despite incoming changes to federal energy policy. The Trump Administration is poised to show more support for fossil-fuels, particularly coal and oil. The federal government is expected to ease regulations on the fossil-fuel sector in an effort to promote the expansion of conventional forms of power. Utilities, however, see significant opportunity in renewable energy, especially where solar and wind are involved. Wind and…

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China has become the world leader in solar energy production

Solar Energy - Chinese Flag

China reaches new milestone in its solar energy adventure China has claimed the title as the world’s leading producer of solar energy. The country’s National Energy Administration has announced that China doubled its photovoltaic capacity last year. By the end of 2016, the country had more than 77 gigawatts of solar capacity in operation. The National Energy Administration claims that China is now the official leader of the global solar energy sector, beating out other countries that have invested heavily in this form of clean power. Several provinces show leadership in…

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Massachusetts is making changes to the way it supports solar energy

Solar Energy - Image of Boston, Massachusetts

State aims to launch new program to show support for solar energy projects Massachusetts has begun overhauling its support for solar energy projects. Energy officials announced a new plan this week that aims to cut the annual cost of solar installations for ratepayers. Officials claim that the new support structure will instill more certainty in the energy market, which will allow solar developers to know exactly what level of incentive they will be receiving for their projects. The structure is also meant to foster more stability in the costs that…

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New project aims to use solar energy to produce hydrogen fuel

Hydrogen Fuel - Sunlight on water

Ambitious new project launched in Germany A new project has been launched in Germany which seeks to leverage the power of the sun to generate hydrogen fuel. The PECSYS project is being coordinated by the Competence Center Thin Film and Nanotechnology for Photovoltaics Berlin (PVcomB). The project is meant to address the issues facing solar energy generation. These issues are difficult to overcome, because they have to do with the simple nature of the world. For instance, solar panels cannot produce electricity during the night or when the sun is…

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Georgia Power is working to expand its solar energy capacity

Solar Energy - Installation of Solar Panels

Company seeks to increase solar energy capacity by 1.6 GW by 2021 Georgia Power has announced that it has made major progress in expanding its solar energy capacity. Last year, the company installed more than 2 million solar panels in Georgia. Now, Georgia Power intends to continue this expansion, adding as much as 1.6 gigawatts of additional solar capacity by 2021. Currently, Georgia Power represents approximately 846 megawatts of solar energy capacity, all of which is in operation at various locations throughout the state. Georgia continues work to embrace renewable…

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Legislation in Indiana could curtail the growth of the solar energy market

Solar Energy Market - Sunset in Indiana

Lawmakers seek to remove net metering from the solar energy market New legislation has been introduced in Indiana that aims to bring about major changes to the state’s solar energy market. The legislation intends to remove net metering, which has long been a major incentive encouraging homeowners and businesses to embrace solar. Solar supporters fear that without net metering, many people may be prevented from using the electricity generated by their own solar panels. This could also limit the number of people able to enter into the solar energy market….

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Solar energy is becoming more affordable globally

New solar projects highlight the continued decline in solar energy costs The cost of solar energy continues to fall throughout the world. In recent months, several solar projects have begun to take form in many countries. A bid to build a 500 megawatt solar power system was recently placed in China, with the bid being $0.46 per watt of capacity. Last week, a similar bid was placed for a solar project in Abu Dhabi, coming in at $0.023 per kilowatt-hour. According to Masdar Clean Energy, this represents one of the…

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India set to launch a new online solar energy training program

Solar Energy - India Sunset

New program aims to help train individuals to be solar technicians Solar energy is growing quickly in India and the government has plans to ensure that the sector has as much support as it needs to thrive. The government has announced that it will be launching a new online training program designed to help people become professional solar technicians. The Solar Energy Corporation of India has been tapped to implement this online program. Those with an Internet connection can enroll in online courses for just $8.79. Those completing the online…

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Las Vegas could be an oasis for solar energy in Nevada

Solar Energy - Las Vegas Sign

City is investing more heavily in solar energy While Nevada’s solar energy market may have suffered a major blow in 2016, there is one city where this form of clean power is flourishing: Las Vegas. The city recently played host to the annual Consumer Electronics Show, which boasted of more than 165,000 attendees. A portion of the power used by the event was provided by solar energy sources. In fact, most of the city actually draws electrical power from the sun. All of Las Vegas’ government buildings are powered by…

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Solar energy capacity in Minnesota continues to grow

Solar Energy Capacity - Minnesota

Solar energy capacity in Minnesota is growing at an unprecedented rate Minnesota’s solar energy capacity exploded last year, highlighting strong and unprecedented growth in the solar field. In 2010, the state had virtually no solar energy capacity. In 2015, however, this capacity reached 35 megawatts. At the end of 2016, Minnesota’s solar energy capacity skyrocketed to 250 megawatts. This has made the state one of the fastest growing solar markets in the country. Many energy developers have begun bringing their projects to the state in order to take advantage of…

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Sunflare develops flexible solar panels

Solar Panels - Residential Solar Energy

Flexible solar panels can, potentially, be installed on any surface Sunflare, a company based in California, has developed a new, flexible solar panel that it believes will become a major asset for those interested in solar energy. Following years or research and development, the company has produced a copper indium gallium selenide solar panel. The new solar panel can be installed on virtually any surface due to its flexibility, which may make it quite attractive to homeowners and businesses interested in becoming more environmentally friendly. Cost of solar energy continues…

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Researchers develop solar cells to power pacemakers

Solar Cells to Power Pacemakers - Image of Pacemaker

Research team has developed a system of solar cells designed to provide energy to medical implants When many people think of “solar energy,” they often envision solar panels installed on rooftops or large solar farms. Rarely, however, do people think that solar power can be used for more than just providing electricity to a home or business. A team of researchers from the Bern University Hospital and the University of Bern are working to change this. The team has developed a new solar device that can be used to power…

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Missouri’s solar energy market continues to see strong growth

Solar Energy Market - Solar panels on roofs of homes

Solar energy market has had a positive economic and environmental impact on the state Missouri is experiencing the economic and environmental benefits of its growing solar energy market. In recent years, the state has been investing in this form of clean power in an effort to distance itself from fossil-fuels and reduce emissions. In 2015, the solar energy market in Missouri experienced healthy growth, which has continued into 2016. With the state experiencing strong growth in the solar sector, Missouri is likely to show more support for this form of…

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