Utility Dive: Trade Groups SEPA and ADS Are Merging to Focus on DERs

The move to merge the [Solar Electric Power Association] and the [Association for Demand Response and Smart Grid] comes at a time whensolarand distributed energy technologies are beginning to converge and intersect. The merger positions the new SEPA as the first U.S. trade group to focus on distributed energy resources, a fast-emerging area of opportunities and challenges for utilities, third parties, and policymakers alike.

"The issues and interests of solar, demand response and the smart grid will only become more intertwined as we move forward,” said SEPA CEO Julia Hamm in a statement.

Politico: Keystone? Whatever. It’s Coal That Matters.

While the rejection of Keystone is a huge symbolic victory for climate activists, and a nice talking point for Obama to use at the global climate talks in Paris, the ongoing destruction of the U.S. coal industry is a much more tangible victory for the climate.

With Keystone, Obama laid down a marker that the U.S. intends to slash emissions and leave fossil fuels in the ground in the future, but coal retirements are already doing that at a rapid pace right now.

AltEnergyStocks: MEMC and SunEdison, a Tale of Two Companies

SunEdison (SUNE) has been in the news of late, and with a confusing acquisition strategy, interesting financial decisions, layoffs and high debt, it is beginning to look a lot like MEMC. 

This is really a tale of two companies -- one a raw-material manufacturer and pioneer in silicon wafer technology founded decades ago, the other a pioneering developer in the commercial PV space, and how in becoming one, the combined company took on the personality of the raw-material company.

Vox: U.S. Homes Have Gotten Huge -- Offsetting the Gains in Energy Efficiency

Overall, American homes today are about 31 percent more energy-efficient (as measured in energy use per square foot) than they were in 1970. But because they're so much larger, and square footage has risen about 28 percent, on average, there's basically been no change in overall energy intensity. The two trends balance each other out.

The pessimistic take is that all our efficiency gains have been for naught. Anything we do to save energy just gets counterbalanced by growing consumption. Build a more efficient refrigerator, and people just decide to buy two.

Associated Press: Mysterious Electric Car Startup Looking to Build $1B Factory

The luxury electric-car market may be small, but it’s lucrative enough to get another jolt -- this time from a mysterious startup that says it wants to re-imagine how people interact with their autos.

The startup’s name is Faraday Future, and it has been hunting for a place to build what it says will be a $1 billion manufacturing plant for a new line of cars. Four states are contenders and the company says to expect an announcement within weeks.