100% by 2045 renewable energy bill introduced in California

On the same day that the U.S. Senate in a mostly party-line vote approved Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt – who is by all accounts an enemy of environmental regulation – to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, the head of California’s state senate was busy leaving a very different kind of legacy. Last Friday, Speaker Pro Tempore Kevin de Léon introduced a bill (SB 584) to mandate that utilities procure 100% of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2045.

This would accelerate the 50% by 2030 mandate which is currently in place, and would put California tied with Hawaii (which also has a 100% by 2045 mandate) for the most aggressive renewable portfolio standard (RPS) in the United States. On the global scale there are only a few nations with more ambitious plans, among them Denmark, which seeks to obtain all energy – not just electricity – from renewables by 2050.

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U.S. Solar Market Grows 95% in 2016, Smashes Records

BOSTON, Mass. and WASHINGTON, D.C. – In its biggest year to date, the United States solar market nearly doubled its annual record, topping out at 14,626 megawatts (MW) of solar photovoltaic (PV) installed in 2016. This represents a 95 percent increase over 2015’s then record-breaking 7,493 MW. GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) previewed this data in advance of their upcoming U.S. Solar Market Insight report, set to be released on March 9.

For the first time ever, U.S. solar ranked as the number one source of new electric generating capacity additions on an annual basis. Altogether, solar accounted for 39 percent of new capacity additions across all fuel types in 2016.

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How US solar capacity could double year-over-year

Despite a whopping 4,143MW of solar PV installed in the US in the third quarter of last year, Q4 2016 is expected to surpass that historic total, according to latest figures from GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).

2016 is set to be a record year for solar on all counts; shattering all previous quarterly installation results.

“Coming off our largest quarter ever and with an extremely impressive pipeline ahead, it’s safe to say the state of the solar industry here in America is strong,” said Tom Kimbis, SEIA’s interim president. “The solar market now enjoys an economically-winning hand that pays off both financially and environmentally, and American taxpayers have noticed. With a 90% favourability rating and 209,000 plus jobs, the US solar industry has proven that when you combine smart policies with smart 21st century technology, consumers and businesses both benefit.”

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American Quality, Proximity to Domestic Market Powers Panel Pact Between SunSpark USA and Gigawatt

(RIVERSIDE, CA) –  For Southern California-based solar panel manufacturer SunSpark USA and distributor Gigawatt, there’s no place quite like home – particularly when it comes to operating efficiencies and customer value.  The two companies have reached agreement on a deal which effectively enables the LA-based distributor to move much of its panel sourcing from overseas markets to SunSpark USA facilities in nearby Riverside, California.

Terms call for the manufacturer to supply Gigawatt with high-efficiency American solar panels that allow Gigawatt’s diverse customer base to power their lives with sunshine. SunSpark USA panels, which come in mono and poly crystalline form, feature industry leading solar cell technology.

The agreement continues strong 2017 sales momentum for SunSpark, which opened its U.S. plant a little more than a year ago.  The panel manufacturer already supplies more than 200MW of power annually to the U.S. market – a number that continues to grow.  Core segments include residential and commercial facilities, as well as government and military installations.

SunSpark views the partnership as a prime opportunity to expand its revenue growth without a corresponding increase in sales and marketing infrastructure.   Gigawatt, in turn, benefits by bringing its customer base top-quality American panels with all the customer support and logistical advantages created by working with an onshore manufacturing partner.

SunSpark USA vice president Hans Liu said, “GigaWatt fits the partner prototype we developed as part of our broader strategy for building market share in the United States.  The product and operational synergies were clear from the onset of our discussions.  We’re looking forward to a long and mutually beneficial relationship.”

 

About SunSpark USA

Launched in 2015, SunSpark USA’s mission is to sustainably produce solar panels in support of a cleaner, greener world. The Riverside, California-based company maintains all operations – including manufacturing, product assembly, distribution, finance, sales and customer service – all under one roof.

 

About GigaWatt Inc.

In 2006, GoGreenSolar.com was founded and operated out of a garage, quickly becoming one of the top online destinations for solar panels, inverters, batteries, racking, and other solar energy products.  Since its humble beginnings of getting people started with green energy, the website evolved into GigaWatt, Inc., a multimillion dollar green energy corporation.  Distribution, installation, and product development are at the heart of GigaWatt’s core competencies.

San Diego Sees 54% Rise in Solar Power Installations

The city of San Diego issued permits for more than 2,200 solar energy systems last year, compared to just over 1,200 the year before, the mayor’s office reported Wednesday.

City officials credited lower costs, technological innovations and streamlined solar permit processing services for the 54 percent jump.

Increasing the use of solar and other renewable resources is a key element of the city’s plan to address the effects of climate change.

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American Solar Job Force Hits New Record Growth, Now Stands at 260,000-Strong

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Experiencing its biggest growth year yet, the solar industry in the United States now employs more than 260,000 Americans, according to The Solar Foundation’s seventh annual National Solar Jobs Census released today.

“Last year, one out of every 50 new jobs created here in America was a solar job,” said Abigail Ross Hopper, president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). “That’s an incredible finding that proves that solar energy is increasingly becoming a linchpin in America’s economy. When communities across America open their doors to solar, the jobs come racing in.”

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Solar Installations Reach Milestone: 300GW of global PV capacity

The growth of photovoltaic technology around the world continues, and the global success story has now reached a further milestone: 300 gigawatts (GWp) of total installed solar power capacity around the world. This was announced by the German Solar Association in Berlin, on the basis of their own calculations. In 2016 there was a global deployment of solar power systems with an additional nominal capacity of around 70 gigawatts. That amounts to a jump of around 30% in new deployment compared to the previous year 2015. The photovoltaic systems installed in 2016 alone generate around 90 terawatt hours of clean solar power. In mathematical terms, this new capacity would supply 25 million additional households with an annual electricity consumption of 3500 kilowatt hours.

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Making a persuasive case for clean energy in 2017

The new year is nearly a month old, but 2016 remains in my head; what a year it was. The Chicago Cubs won the World Series, giant pandas were taken off the endangered species list for the first time in 26 years, relations with Cuba improved drastically and Nintendo, seemingly out of nowhere, introduced to the world Pokémon Go.

With the U.K. exiting the European Union; the loss of pop, movie and cultural idols across the board; and intensifying conflict in the Middle East, 2016 was a rollercoaster of emotions, culminating in a jolting election that many of us will be processing for a long time to come.

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US solar power employs more people than oil, coal and gas combined, report shows

Solar energy in the US employs more people than traditional coal, gas and oil combined, a report has found, in a revelation that could undermine Donald Trump’s argument that green energy isn’t good for the economy.

The latest report from the US Department of Energy (DOE) reveals solar energy accounts for the largest proportion of employers in the Electric Power Generation sector, with wind energy the third largest, while the coal industries have declined in the past 10 years.

Solar energy employed 374,000 people over the year 2015-2016, making up 43 per cent of the sector’s workforce, while the traditional fossil fuels combined employed 187,117, making up just 22 per cent of the workforce, according to the report.

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Berkeley Lab finds negligible potential rate impacts from distributed solar

The “cost shift” from solar system owners to other utility customers is one of the most widely propagated myths around PV. And despite this obfuscation being repeatedly disproven by many studies, it remains widely propagated by utilities and either poorly informed or outright captured politicians and regulators from Maine to Arizona.

Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (LBNL) has recently made its contribution to the debunking of this canard, but has taken another tack. Instead of looking at whether solar is imposing a cost shift on other customers, the national lab instead looks at the overall potential rate impact of distributed solar under a variety of valuations, and compares this to other rate impacts.

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