Austin, Texas, is considering building a major solar power plant, according to the Dallas Morning News. Austin’s city electric utility wants to set aside 300 acres of land for a solar array that would be built and owned by San Francisco-based Gemini Solar Development Co.
According to the Los Angeles Times, L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is advocating a proposal to install enough rooftop solar panels on buildings in the city by 2013 to power 100,000 households now served by the Department of Water and Power (DWP).
According the MSNBC, a team led by former NASA executive and physicist John Mankins captured solar energy from a mountaintop in Maui and beamed it 92 miles to the main island of Hawaii. The long-range energy transmission experiment opens the possibility of sending solar energy from space to earth.
Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) announced it will install solar photovoltaic (PV) systems on the roofs of several schools. This initiative will make MCPS the first school system in Maryland and the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area to launch a large-scale solar PV program.
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) recently reported a couple of developments that may help solar power enter the mainstream market. In one project, MIT reported new photovoltaic cells could be placed on windows without inhibiting views or light passage.
PPL Renewable Energy announced plans in May 2008 to design, construct and operate a 1.7-megawatt solar-power system for Schering-Plough Corp. in Summit, N.J. When completed, the green energy project will be the largest rooftop solar installation in the United States.
According to USA Today, new technology developed by Silicon Valley startup SUNRGI could fast-track solar power by delivering it to the market in a year’s time at a price comparable to coal-fired electricity.
In June 2008, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom helped the city achieve a first when he signed a bill recently approved by the Board of Supervisors. Officials are touting the GoSolarSF program as the first-ever and largest solar program of its kind offered by a city in the country.
A debate within political circles in the historic town of Marburg, Germany, and its regional government in Giessen pits the environmentally conscious against the very environmentally conscious and highlights the question of where to draw the line when it comes to mandating energy efficiency.
The business model of manhy electrical contractors does not involve outside sales, leaving those contractors out of position to approach the residential solar business, according to Bernie Kottlier, director, Green Building Solutions, Los Angeles Labor Management Cooperative Community (LALMCC).