EnergyWire: From Madeleine Albright to Candymaker, Rule Sees Broad Support
A swarm of new Clean Power Plan backers arrived on the legal scene last week, with filings rolling in from big technology companies, government officials and a couple of oddballs.
Dominion Resources Inc. was perhaps the most unexpected party to side with U.S. EPA in the massive litigation over the agency's plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector.
While utilities across the country have helped lead the fight against the climate rule, Dominion -- which owns several coal- and natural-gas-fired power plants -- says the plan's focus on power from gas and renewables is consistent with industry trends.
PVTech: SolarCity’s Silevo Modules to Be Included in China-U.S. Trade Case
SolarCity’s request that its Silevo modules be excluded from the scope of the U.S. trade case against Chinese products has been rejected in a preliminary ruling made on Monday.
The company had argued that its "Triex" solar cells are a thin-film technology and should not be included. SolarWorld, the petitioner in the case, argued that the cells have a crystalline silicon substrate and should be added. SolarCity argues that the amorphous-silicon layers added to that substrate determine the type of cell Triex technology represents. Both sides presented large volumes of technical information to the Department of Commerce.
InsideClimate News: Study Sends a Warning to Wall Street of Assets at Risk From Climate Change
Climate change may wipe out $2.5 trillion, or 1.8 percent of the world's financial assets, by the end of this century if the planet continues to warm at its current rate, according to a new study.
That would be the most likely outcome under business as usual, according to researchers whose peer-reviewed study was published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change. In the study's worst-case scenario, the current rate of warming could threaten $24 trillion, or 16.9 percent of global financial assets, by 2100. Economic models used in the study put the chances of the worst-case scenario at 1 percent.
Renewable Energy World: Solar Power More Lucrative Than Crops at Some U.S. Farms
Farmland has become fertile territory for clean energy, as solar and wind developers in North America, Europe and Asia seek more flat, treeless expanses to build. That’s also been a boon for struggling U.S. family farms that must contend with floundering commodity prices.
“There is not a single crop that we could have grown on that land that would generate the income that we get from the solar farm,” said one farmer.
The rise in solar comes as the value of crops in the Southeast -- with the exception of tobacco -- has dropped. Cotton prices have fallen 71 percent in the last five years. Soybeans are down 33 percent, and peanuts have slipped 16 percent.
Bloomberg: Why Your Utility Bill's Still Rising Even When Power's So Cheap
Record-low costs for power in the U.S. haven’t translated into lower monthly payments for consumers.
As the price of electricity in the eastern U.S. fell by half over the last decade, utilities raised monthly bills for residential customers by 26 percent, according to government data. Consumer advocates say the power companies are using falling electricity costs as cover to raise other charges. Utilities counter that it’s payback for billions of dollars' worth of government-mandated improvements to long-neglected infrastructure.