News / SolarBlog

Google investing $280 million in home solar projects

Source: Solar Daily

June 14, 2011

Google said Tuesday it is investing $280 million to help finance home solar projects in the Internet giant’s largest effort yet to promote clean energy.

Google said the money will go to create a fund that will help SolarCity, a company which provides solar energy options for homeowners and businesses, to finance more solar installations across the United States.

“This is our largest clean energy project investment to date and brings our total invested in the clean energy sector to more than $680 million,” said Rick Needham, Google’s director of green business operations.

“We continue to look for other renewable energy investments that make business sense and help develop and deploy cleaner sources of energy,” he wrote in a blog post.

He said Google had also entered into a partnership with SolarCity to provide solar power to the homes of Google employees at a discount.

Google last month announced a $55 million investment in a California wind energy farm, and in April, the Mountain View, California-based company announced a $100 million investment in a wind farm being built in Oregon.

Google in April also said it has invested $168 million to help complete the construction of one of the world’s biggest solar power plants in California’s Mojave Desert.

Source: Phoenix Business Journal

April 2, 2011

Salt River Project is looking at expanding its renewable energy and conservation standards to 20 percent or more by 2020, but solar businesses say it’s not enough.

SRP has been meeting with stakeholders over the past few weeks to hash out plans for a new renewable plan heading into the next eight to 10 years.

With an initial goal of 5 percent by 2015 and 15 percent by 2020, SRP is ramping up its efforts because it already is coming close to the first goal, said Debbie Kimberly, the utility’s manager of energy efficiency and policy analysis.

Input from stakeholders, primarily solar companies…



Source: Energy matters
February 22, 2011


A US solar energy company has announced the commissioning of North America’s biggest commercial solar dish, one of the largest concentrated photovoltaic solar (CSP) thermal dish collectors in the world.

Southwest Solar Technologies say the mammoth TurboSolar dish will form the centrepiece of their 18-acre solar research park in Phoenix, Arizona.

At about 75 feet in diameter, the dish has a solar collection area of over 320 square metres, three times more than standard solar dish designs. The company says this will enable it to generate more solar energy at a much higher capacity…


In California and Arizona, Governors emphasize renewable energy goals

Source: The Solar Home and Business Journal
January 3, 2010

In his inaugural address, California Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr. reiterated a campaign pledge to seek development of 20,000 megawatts of renewable energy capacity in the state by 2020.

In Arizona, Gov. Janice Brewer, elected to her first full term in November, said the state will develop a robust solar industry that is “the envy of the world.”

In New Mexico, meanwhile, new Gov. Susana Martinez, after being sworn in Jan. 1, created a small-business task force to identify rules that it concludes would harm business growth and job creation. During the review, all proposed…


RIVERSIDE: Arizona solar tower could give city renewable energy

Source: The Press-Enterprise
January 2, 2011

Riverside may increase its use of renewable energy with power from a unique new project in the western Arizona desert.

The La Paz solar tower would provide 25 megawatts of power to Riverside. That’s about 2 percent of the city’s overall demand but would increase its renewable portfolio by about 10 percent, Riverside Public Utilities General Manager David Wright said.

The City Council will vote Tuesday on entering a 30-year contract to get power from the La Paz tower for about 9.5 cents per kilowatt-hour. The project isn’t expected to produce energy until 2014, and there are safeguards in the contract so the city has no obligation until it actually buys and uses the power, said Gary Nolff, the city utility’s assistant general manager of resources.

The project uses the basic principle of heat rising to generate energy. It uses greenhouse-like structures over a 2,500-acre area to collect air heated by the sun and funnel it into a 2,000-foot tower. Wind turbines at the base of the tower are operated by the natural draft…


Arizona solar industry thrives

Source:  Sustainable Business Oregon
December 10, 2010

Michael Neary remembers when the Arizona Solar Energy Industries Association was a tiny trade group made up primarily of businesses that installed and maintained solar water heaters and rooftop panels.

But all that changed two years ago, when its 40-member roster more than doubled as real estate firms, law offices, tool suppliers, staffing companies, electricians and plumbing distributors suddenly became eager to join the mix.

Neary, executive director of the association, said the change reflects a movement quietly taking shape within the state’s renewable energy industry: Supply-chain businesses and other support providers are cropping up to serve the growing number of solar companies and manufacturers operating in Arizona.

“The growth of the solar supply chain all depends on how the industry is going, and this year we’ve seen a turning point in the industry,”…