Brights Ideas at University of Louisiana at Lafayette

Deep in Louisiana’s Cajun Country, there’s a renewable energy research center dedicated to studying solar energy and biopower. And it smells like barbecue. Located in Crowley, Louisiana, the Cleco Alternative Energy Center is sponsored by Cleco Power, LLC, and operated by the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

What’s the #1 reason utilities should purchase wind from Clean Line?

The project is estimated to cost a mere 3 cents per kilowatt-hour. That’s comparable to the price of operating a modern natural gas power plant, making wind not only cost-effective but a guaranteed low-cost electricity source for decades in the future. Because there is no fuel cost associated with wind energy, utilities can secure long-term contracts (approximately 20-25 years) and lock in prices that protect their customers from price spikes due to volatility in fossil fuel costs. TVA could also receive additional benefits by acting as a pass-through transmission provider for other utilities purchasing wind energy, and earn additional revenue. For the TVA system, the project is estimated to actually reduce overall costs by about $1.44 per megawatt hour.

How Solar Could Help Replace Coal in Central Florida

Lakeland, FL leaders now acknowledge that retiring the McIntosh 3 coal-fired power generator is a question of when, not if. Lakeland Electric, which operates the 364MW plant and co-owns it with Orlando Utilities Commission, is poised to lead Florida utilities away from coal and toward cleaner energy choices, but thus far is hesitating. Solar energy, combined with gas or with cutting edge batteries, could shift the balance for this forward-thinking utility.

Gulf Power Customers Face Unprecedented Fee Increase

About every four years, Florida’s biggest power companies come to the Florida Public Service Commission asking for a rate hike. We’ve come to expect it. However, Gulf Power’s current proposed rate hike has a completely unexpected element to it  – and customers should be very concerned. What’s going on? Gulf Power, the utility for Northwest […]

2016 Declared World’s Hottest Year on Record

Scientists reported earlier this week that 2016 was the world’s hottest year since formal record keeping began, topping the records set in 2015 and 2014, each year successively hotter than the one before it. Reported by NASA and NOAA, the news tells us that 16 hottest years in modern global history have occurred in the past […]

DIY Energy Efficiency – Solar Powered Attic Fans

After completing the solar attic fan install, I immediately noticed a considerable drop in my electric bills amounting to 60-70 dollars a month in summer and my AC could now cool my house to a comfortable level without constantly running. The attic temperature over my garage has dropped by 20-30 degrees. My initial 200 dollar investment has likely saved me thousands of dollars over the years and prevented countless amounts CO2 from entering the atmosphere.

Success! Memphis City Council Votes to Help Lift Extreme Energy Burden

At Tuesday afternoon’s Memphis City Council meeting, the Council unanimously approved a resolution that strongly recommends changing Memphis Light Gas and Water’s (MLGW) current Share the Pennies program to an “automatically enrolled” format. This small program design change, which SACE has been advocating for since Spring 2016, will help generate significantly more funding for Project Care, MLGW’s low-income home weatherization initiative – potentially generating around $1.5 million dollars per year! Additionally, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), MLGW’s wholesale power provider, has agreed to purchase any energy savings realized by the “new” Share the Pennies program, providing another valuable source of funding for a program.

Anti clean energy NC legislators try to shut down nearly complete wind farm

The Amazon Wind Farm is the first large-scale wind farm in North Carolina, and is located predominately in farm land. The wind developer, Avagrid, has gone through more than six years of federal, state, and local permitting, review, studies and construction. In an eleventh-hour attempt to kill the project, a small group of anti-wind power North Carolina legislators claim even more red tape is necessary, because they claim a wind farm could interfere with a radar installation in Virginia.

The Carolinas’ First Offshore Wind Lease Sale Scheduled for March 16

The first-ever lease sale for offshore wind off the Carolinas’ coast has been scheduled for March 16, 2017. The lease sale will allow interested development companies to bid on the rights to site assessment activities to gauge the suitability of the area for offshore wind development. The area to be leased is known as the Kitty Hawk leasing area, and lies approximately 24 nautical miles off of North Carolina’s coast (depicted in orange in the map to the right). This announcement follows the identification of the area in August 2014 and the proposal of the sale last August. Development of offshore wind could bring substantial benefits to North Carolina.

SACE to Host Series of Department of Energy Meetings for Solar Funding Opportunity

The U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative has launched the “Solar in Your Community”, a challenge to inspire hundreds of local teams across the country to participate in bringing solar programs and projects to their communities. It aims to expand the solar market to a diverse array of new consumers, including low- and moderate-income customers, and nonprofit community-serving organizations.