solar energy

Maine Completes Value of Solar Study

Posted on April 21,2015 by ScottG in distributed generation

A study conducted for the Maine Public Utilities Commission says that the real value of electricity generated by photovoltaic (PV) panels is more than twice what solar customers currently get under net-metering rules. The study, Maine Distributed Solar Valuation Study, was the result of legislation passed last year directing the PUC to calculate the value of "distributed solar generation" in the state. The report was turned over to a legislative committee on March 1, 2015.

How to Detect an Internet Solar Energy Scam

Posted on April 21,2015 by ab3 in photovoltaic

All I was trying to do was find some sports scores on Yahoo the other day when I saw it. I don't go looking for this stuff, and when I do see it, I try to ignore it. But this one clotheslined me with an unfair term. That's the ad in question to the right. Have you seen it? I probably shouldn't tell you the name of the website (, but the kryptonite term that made my fingers go apoplectic was “free energy.” Seeing it capitalized intensified the effect. And the photo! Is that a diseased wireless router robot surrendering its secrets to me?

Taking a 20-Year-Old Florida House to Net Zero

Posted on April 21,2015 by ab3 in HERS index

Steve Larson, a builder and home energy rater in Florida, sent me an e-mail with his energy bills for February through July of 2012. When you subtract out the monthly service charges, he paid only $5.35 for electricity during those six months. That's right — less than a dollar a month for electricty... and then $9.88 a month for the service charge.

The PV/Solar-Thermal Switch-up

Posted on April 21,2015 by Fretboard in California

A recent story about market forces at work in the solar-power world underscored the notion that large-scale photovoltaic systems, at least in regions where sun exposure favors their use, are dominating the renewable-energy landscape.

7 Steps to an Energy-Efficient House: 7. Renewable Energy

Posted on April 21,2015 by Betsy Pettit in hydro

Editor's introduction: With energy prices rising again, many homeowners are planning energy-efficiency improvements to their homes. But most people are unsure of where to begin, and even seasoned builders don’t always know which priorities should rise to the top of the list. Betsy Pettit, an architect at [Building Science Corporation](, recommends starting where you can get the most bang for the buck.

Waiting for California to Raise Its Solar Subsidy Limit

Posted on April 21,2015 by Fretboard in California

Nancy Skinner, a Democratic freshman in the California State Assembly, began her political career, on the Berkeley City Council, before she had even graduated from college. She knows well that the success of legislative initiatives – particularly environmental proposals – often is tied to perseverance.

Solar Energy – Insulate First!

Posted on April 21,2015 by AlexWilson in insulation

I moved to Brattleboro, Vermont 28 years ago to work for an organization that was all about promoting solar energy—an industry that blossomed out of the energy crisis in the 1970s. When the problem is dependence on an energy source that’s non-renewable, that comes from far away and sucks money out of our local economy, that pollutes our air when we burn it, and that contributes to global warming, it makes a lot of sense to look for an alternative that’s renewable, available locally, and environmentally safe. Solar energy is just such a solution.

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