Topic: Energy Efficiency

Energy Efficiency Articles

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The Struggle to Expand Clean Energy in 2016

As the solar industry grows and energy efficiency works to do the same, 2016 brought a significant expansion of breaking news for us to cover and curate. The articles below are our top stories showing the many new and surprising developments we saw last year.

Clean Energy Jobs Eclipse Coal Jobs in the Midwest

Even without reliably supportive policies that help clean energy grow, Midwestern coal-producing states already have many more jobs from solar and wind power than from coal production. There is also a promising economic opportunity to repurpose assembly lines in Indiana, Michigan and Ohio to manufacture renewable energy equipment.

No Resolution in Sight for International Climate Finance

Some of the largest battles at November’s United Nations climate conference, COP22, broke out over climate financing – who pays for it, who gets the money, and who meets the requirements. The stage for the financing challenges was set in 2009 when developed countries agreed to a target of raising $100 billion USD annually by 2020 in the Green Climate Fund (GCF).

US Legislators Will Consider Green Banks

The presidential election of Donald Trump complicates the potential of the United States Green Bank Act (H.R. 5802, S. 3382). The act, sponsored by Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Representative and Senator-Elect Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), is intended to offer additional financial structures to deploy clean energy and energy efficiency across the nation in the face of climate change.

Jump Starting Innovation from Carbon-Pricing Revenues

Leaders from business and government joined the dialogue on carbon pricing revenue at the “Innovating to Meet the Climate Challenge” event in New York City on Sept. 21. Revenues can enhance productivity across the economy by reducing the capital cost of renewable energy, enabling investments in different sectors and addressing corporations’ carbon portfolios, panelists said.

New York Debates How to Finance Low-Income Solar

In most of the United States, low-to-moderate-income (LMI) communities have little to no voice about how solar energy can bring jobs and economic stability. New York is an exception. The state held an extended dialogue on this subject this year through the CDG Low-Income Collaborative. Although the New York Public Service Commission (NYPSC) dismissed the committee’s recommendations, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) decided to put some of them in place.

United States Enables Residential PACE

Removing federal obstacles to property assessed clean energy (PACE) has been a long-term subject of debate. United States Department of Housing and Urban Development issued a guideline on July 19 enabling residential PACE financing and clarifying the conditions for purchasing or refinancing assessments with Federal Housing Administration loans.

Distributed Energy Can Lead to Smarter Grid Planning

It is typically a costly, capital-intensive challenge to expand traditional transmission and distribution (T&D) grid infrastructure to meet new and existing demand for electricity. Can distributed energy resources – such as solar and wind installations on residential or commercial sites – complement traditional T&D grid infrastructure in cost-effective ways?