The Northwest National Marine Renewable Energy Center (NNMREC), which is based at Oregon State University, chose Newport, Ore., as the future site of the first utility-scale, grid-connected wave-energy test site in the United States—the Pacific Marine Energy Center.
With 115 million households in America— more than twice as many as there were 50 years ago, according to the U.S. Census Bureau—the demand for residential lighting and controls has both grown and evolved to appeal to a savvier, more high-tech, and more energy-conscious consumer.
We’re now more than a year into the release of the first two major players in the electric vehicle (EV) market—Nissan’s all-electric Leaf and Chevy’s hybrid-electric Volt, and results so far are decidedly, well, undecided.
Looking at the four years measured in billions (B) of dollars, residential numbers climbed from $7B to $10B to $14B to $25B. Nonresidential grew from $3B to $25B to $47B to $60B. In all, green construction represented 44 percent of the building market in 2012.
It makes sense that, as each form of digital technology goes wireless, the process of charging up all those devices would eventually go wireless, too. Soon, even electric vehicles (EVs) will have the ability to charge up without wires.
It’s almost an axiom of technology that some of the greatest innovations in consumer electronics come from the military. For example, microwave ovens are linked to the first radar technology developed by the military in World War II.
With all of the help and all of the hype they have enjoyed in the last few years, renewables are starting to get their proverbial legs underneath them. That is not to say they have progressed beyond the point where they could use some assistance from the public sector.
Despite continued uncertainty about the economy, Americans are showing increased confidence in the housing market and the direction of the economy, according to Fannie Mae’s November 2012 National Housing Survey.
A recent study by the consulting firm Clean Power Research showed that solar power in New Jersey and Pennsylvania delivers value to the electric grid that exceeds its cost by a large margin, making it a bargain for consumers.
There will always be a little bit of the outrageous in renewable power. Yet, every day, in the realm of energy, what once seemed like the exclusive domain of fantasy becomes an accepted part of our lives.
Just as every new technology thrives on its own promise, drawbacks and flaws in the initial design also hold back progress. For example, computers were once the size of a room. Calculators were initially too expensive for most people to own.
I’d like to tell you that 2013 will be the year the economy comes roaring back, with prosperity for all and customers lining up to acquire our services without any effort on our part. I can’t do that (but don’t let that worry you too much).