Solar

WAMC

An ambitious program to install solar panels at New York's public schools, already off to a slow start, has to recruit a new partner after the financial collapse of one of the nation's largest solar companies.

WAMC News Intern Paulina Phelps / WAMC

The Halfmoon Community Solar Project, expected to be completed by late summer, will feature more than 1,700 panels and will generate enough electricity to power about 103 average-sized homes.

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There’s a new partnership weighing in with a proposal for changing the compensation model for solar net metering. It includes a number of New York utilities and national solar companies.

Officials including Nelliston Mayor Douglas Bathrick, Monolith's Tim Carr, Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara and David Ziskin cut the ribbon at the solar array.
Angelo Santabarbara

This week, officials flipped the switch on a 200-kilowatt solar garden in Montgomery County. The array is expected to save a local district $10,000 in its first year.

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo says 900 solar projects are underway through 26 community "Solarize" campaigns across New York, and another 31 community campaigns are set to begin this spring. 

WAMC Composite Photo by Dave Lucas

An upstate New York town that repeatedly found itself without power for days during a string of storms is planning a dramatic step — pulling its municipal buildings entirely off the electric grid.

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On Wednesday Governor Andrew Cuomo announced New York will participate in the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Ready Vets program. The program at Fort Drum will begin on January 11th.

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Gov. Charlie Baker is launching a $30 million residential solar loan program to help continue the expansion of the renewable power source in Massachusetts.

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The Massachusetts legislature recessed formal sessions for the year earlier this week without renewing a solar power incentive program.  It leaves many solar power projects across the state in limbo.

The way Americans produce and consume energy is on the brink of a revolution. According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance this year is poised to be a record breaking year for renewable energy and solar energy is at the center of this transformation. 

In his new book, Harness The Sun: America's Quest For A Solar-Powered Future, ​renewable engery writer and speaker Philip Warberg, tells the story of solar energy's dramatic rise and the challenges facing its future.

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A ruling by the Internal Revenue Service over a Vermont man’s individual tax credit is raising hopes that it could promote group solar projects.

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A newly created 10-member Vermont panel meets for the first time later this month to work out issues related to siting of solar power projects.

NYS Energy Plan

Renewable energy is taking center stage in New York, as the state forges ahead in its quest to develop and expand solar, wind and hydropower.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

The quest for cheaper energy on the consumer level trails back to the late 1970s, when solar appeared to be positioning to become a major player in power generation. Alternative power may get a boost from the advent of so-called "community grids.”

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With Charlie Baker to be sworn in as governor of Massachusetts in less than one month, community leaders are urging the Republican to expand solar power in the commonwealth.

Monolith Solar, which engineers, designs and installs solar energy modules is expanding in the Capital Region.

Monolith will build its new headquarters, and research and development and manufacturing facility in the Vista Technology Campus in Slingerlands. The project will create 76 new jobs. Monolith also plans to install a solar farm on site, producing enough electricity to power most of the tech park.

Gramercy Communications

A new poll shows upstate New Yorkers believe in higher quality care for veterans.

One positive impact of the recent VA scandal may be that Americans’ attitudes and understanding of the challenges returning veterans face have sharpened. Long wait times and dishonest record keeping at some VA sites led to the ouster of Secretary Eric Shinseki and has forced a reexamination of how the country should treat its booming Iraq and Afghanistan veteran population.

New York has announced it will bundle its multiple solar programs into the unified statewide NY-Sun Incentive Program. The billion-dollar initiative aims to add more than 3,000 megawatts of installed solar capacity by 2023.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says combining the programs will bolster the state's solar economy. NY-Sun will administer procedures now overseen by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority , Long Island Power Authority , PSEG Long Island, and New York Power Authority.

WAMC Composite Photo by Dave Lucas

Since Governor Andrew Cuomo launched the NY-Sun initiative in 2012, his office says approximately 300 megawatts of photovoltaic generation capacity has been installed or is under development — more than what was installed in New York in the previous decade. Interest in solar projects has yet to peak...

Last week, the state announced that solar energy installers working with nonresidential clients will be allocated $60 million in the program's third round of funding.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

PosiGen Solar Solutions, a growing provider of comprehensive solar solutions programs, will host the grand opening of its first store in New York State this Saturday. 

With its entrance into the Albany market, the company will create up to 120 new green jobs while offering consumers solar panel and energy efficiency concepts that will help all customers of any income level save on their energy bills while helping the environment. 

Details: PosiGen Solar Solutions Grand Opening & Ribbon Cutting by Mayor Kathy Sheehan

When: Saturday, May 17

WAMC/Pat Bradley

Construction of a solar farm is underway at Vermont's only active landfill.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Solar Foundation has issued its national Solar Jobs Census 2013 showing what it calls “record-breaking job growth” in the solar industry, including a surge in the Northeast.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Vermont prison in St. Johnsbury is planning to install a solar array outside the facility's fence as a way to help save money.

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Correction 10/11/13: The fence surrounding the array will be six-feet high, not five, as previously reported.

Greenfield’s planning board voted this week to approve Skidmore College’s application for a Planned Unit Development – or PUD. The project involves the construction of a 2-megawatt solar array on a 120-acre parcel of land owned by the college that currently contains baseball and polo fields.

Vermont Department of Public Service

The Washington Electric Cooperative, a small utility in Vermont, has announced that it will set limits on net metering systems. That has raised concerns from advocacy groups who say such a move could discourage development of solar installations.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

A new report released this morning ranks the top 12 solar producing states.  Vermont and Massachusetts are among the leaders and New York is swiftly climbing the ranks.

WAMC

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and other state officials announced yesterday a new target for solar energy installation in the commonwealth.

In his first term, Governor Patrick set a goal of reaching 250 megawatts of solar energy installed statewide by 2017. That goal has been reached four years early, prompting the Patrick-Murray Administration to set a new target of 1.6 gigwatts of solar power by 2020. 

Massachusetts Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Rick Sullivan said that the rate of solar installation is increasing rapidly.

Massachusetts Clean Energy Center

The Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs announced that ten communities in the commonwealth will participate in a new round of the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center's Solarize Mass program, which encourages small businesses and home owners to invest in solar energy. WAMC's Berkshire Bureau Chief Lucas Willard spoke with Executive Director and CEO of the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center Alicia Barton.

Sally McCay, UVM Photo

A new solar installation at the University of Vermont is targeting not only powering part of the campus, but enhancing Vermont’s statewide agriculture sector.

WAMC

Two Berkshire communities are participating in a statewide effort to expand the use of solar energy in private homes and small businesses. WAMC’s Berkshire Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports…

The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center is partnering with the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources to expand small-scale solar projects throughout the state with in its Solarize Massachusetts program.

Pittsfield and Lenox, two designated Green Communities, will be holding community forums to educate the public about solar energy and the Solarize Mass program.

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