The Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF) today hosted a dedication ceremony to unveil a 2-kilowatt solar photovoltaic (PV) system installed on the rooftop of Essex Recycling Center. The town of Essex earned this solar PV system through CCEF’s Connecticut Clean Energy Communities Program.
A distinguished group of energy leaders convened in Golden, CO last week at the NHA Fall Forum to address a critical connection between two clean energy industries: hydrogen and renewables. The link is mutual: the hydrogen industry needs more renewables to produce hydrogen; and the renewables industry needs hydrogen for storage of excess or off-peak energy to address irregular supplies.
It is here. The first day of fall has come and gone and, while it’s still sunny and mild up here in the Northwest, you can smell those first tinges of crisp, winter air after the sun sets. Already minds turn to soups and stews, blankets, and fireplaces. Yet it’s not time to settle in yet. You’ve got rising heating and energy costs to deal with in the upcoming months. Now is the time to get active! And what better way to do that than installing an active solar heating system. Especially if you spend more time than you like frowning at that old, ineffective furnace, there are plenty of reasons why an active solar heating system makes for a great fall project.
Liquid or Air?
Each and every active solar heater begins with one choice: liquid or air. Heaters may be liquid-based, usually incorporating an antifreeze mixture. Liquid-based systems can be used for hot water, a central air system, or a radiant floor system. Most residential purposes utilize flat-plate collectors for liquid-based heating systems.
Air collectors work when solar radiation heats the collector’s metal plate, which, in turn, heats the air in the collector. An electrically powered fan or blower pulls air from the room through the collector, and blows it back into the room. Air systems aren’t prone to freezing as liquid systems are, but they are far less efficient than liquid systems.
Ultimately, the system you choose will depend on your specific situation; a thorough review with your solar installer should bring to light the best choice for you.
There are several benefits of an active solar heating system, besides the pleasure of warmth and free, clean energy from the winter sun. That’s right, free! Energy prices are rising and winters seem to be getting colder. The days of $50 winter electric or gas bills have been replaced by $150 to $200 utility bills. Why not take advantage of nature’s biggest (and brightest) heater? There’s plenty to go round.
That boils down to good economics. Solar heaters are much more cost-effective than their counterparts and the more you use them, the more they save! Ergo, the colder the climate you live in, the more reason you have to get active…with active solar heating! Furthermore, you can also incorporate your water heating needs with your space heat, giving the system twice the work at much less than twice the cost while saving nearly twice as much money. Water and space heating, after all, are the two biggest consumers of energy in the average American household.
But what about the expense of installation? (more…)
Two renewable energy initiatives will be put to the vote this November in California. Proposition 10, or the California Alternative Fuels Initiative, and Proposition 7, the California Solar and Clean Energy Initiative, have brewed up some very heated debate. I focused on Prop 10 in an earlier entry. Here I will try to dissect Proposition 7 and what it could mean for California, already a national leader in renewable energy.
What is Prop 7?
Venture Capital Expert, John Cavalier of Hudson Clean Energy Partners, Offers His Take on Trends in Green Technology
Green Investor Audio Series – Sectors like wind and solar have had a spectacular growth rate
A variety of factors, including global warming and a recent spike in energy costs, have pushed several U.S. states to adopt Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS). These standards have been the biggest catalyst behind the ever-accelerating clean energy movement. Essentially, they require a state’s utilities to generate a certain percentage of their electricity from renewable sources such as solar, wind, geothermal, tidal, and other sources apart from conventional fossil-fueled technologies.
Promoting Clean Energy
As of yet, no one technology has come to dominate the field. That is why states are developing a portfolio of clean energy sources. RPS’s are effective because they push utilities to promote clean energy through rebates, loans, and other incentives. Furthermore, many states offer their own government-issue incentives in the form of rebates and tax incentives. Fortunately for we solar enthusiasts, the United States is, overall, a very sunny place and, for this and many other reasons, solar is becoming a dominant force as states try to achieve their standards. (more…)
While solar energy may feel new to us here in the industrial world, it is, in fact, as old as the sun and humanity. From the beginning humans have learned to use the sun for drying clothes, cooking food, and heating water. Nonetheless, people in the developing world today are well behind industrialized countries such as the U.S., China, and the European Union.
The fact is, these countries are prime candidates for solar energy. Many citizens are without electricity and well off the grid. Solar electric and solar thermal systems would be perfect solutions for delivering clean energy in a fast way to the people who need it most. And it’s not just electricity that solar delivers. Solar collectors are used all over the world to heat water and cook food for communities that are not made of subdivisions and modern kitchens. (more…)
Cinema West has installed solar panels in the Fairfax 5 movie theater in Fairfax Calif. making it the first movie complex to go solar in the USA. The 1952 movie house will by their calculations, be saving $627K over the 30 year life of the panels.
Cinema West founder Dave Corkill said, “Solar energy will not only help us offset our electricity costs, but will also reduce greenhouse emissions and propagate the environmental ideals of this progressive community. The Fairfax Theatre’s marquis is one of the first things you see when entering Fairfax. Now we are proud that it also represents clean energy.”
More details at Emerging Energy News.
Rocky Hill, Conn., September 11, 2008– The Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF) today announced that the Greenwich Academy solar photovoltaic (PV) array it helped to fund is installed and successfully operating. The 27.6-kilowatt array is located on the new roof of the middle school building of the school and is connected to an interactive data monitoring system that will capture performance data, which, in turn, will be used to teach the students about solar energy generation.
Ho to focus on biofuels and biomass sectors