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iPhone marks commissioning of largest solar array in Vermont, North America

first_imgSOUTH BURLINGTON, Vermont . . . July 27, 2011 . . . AllEarth Renewables, Inc.,The touch of an iPhone’ which brought the last of 382 solar trackers into position perpendicular with the sun’ marked the commissioning of the largest solar installation in Vermont and the largest installation of its kind in all of North America.The pole-mounted trackers use innovative GPS and wireless technology to actively follow the sun throughout the day, producing more than 40 percent more energy than fixed solar. The site is off Hinesburg Road in South Burlington on land leased from the Larkin family.Manufactured just four miles from the site of the solar farm, 382 AllSun Trackers produced by Williston-based AllEarth Renewables make up the, $12 million, 2.2 MW farm.The solar project is expected to produce 2.91 million kilowatt hours of energy a year, or enough electricity for over 450 homes. With inverters on each solar tracker to boost energy performance, the project is the largest solar installation to use such a configuration in North America.Attending the commissioning were more than 75 local contractors, engineers, suppliers, developers, parts fabricators, manufacturers, and other workers that had a direct hand in building the project.Pictured: South Burlington City Council Chair Sandra Dooley, Governor Shumlin, Jeanne Morrissey of JAM Construction, Speaker of the House Shap Smith and AllEarth CEO David Blittersdorf. Lieutenant Governor Phil Scott is just outside the picture to the left. Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin, Lt. Governor Phil Scott, and Speaker of the House Shap Smith also spoke at the event. The panel that the governor turned on is laying flat in the middle photo. After being turned on through his iPhone, the panel adjusted to the sun’s location via its GPS device and began producing electricity.‘This project not only produces renewable energy from the sun, it creates a lot of local clean energy jobs,’ said David Blittersdorf, CEO and founder of AllEarth Renewables.  ‘We’ve innovated and refined our AllSun Tracker so it can be affordably used to power homes or businesses, and at the same time make up a utility-sized farm like this project in South Burlington.’Governor Shumlin addresses the gathering.”What we’re doing here,” Blittersdorf said, “is showing the rest of the country how to do renewables.”Blittersdorf said Massachusetts and New Jersey will be his company’s expansion targets. He said those two states have both relatively high electric costs and an interest in renewable energy. States that are burning coal to generate electricity have low cost electricity and less interest in renewables, such as those in the Midwest and South. California, he said, could be a good market in the future, but he said he wants to grow closer to home for now. New England electric rates averaged 15.05 cents per kilowatt hour in 2010 (Vermont 13.09 cents per kwh, Massachusetts 14.63), New Jersey was at 14.84 per kwh and California was at 13.83 per kwh. The US average in 2010 was 9.91 cents per kwh.Part of the state’s Standard Offer program, the farm will sell an estimated 2.91 million annual kWh of power generated by the installation to Vermont’s Sustainably Priced Energy Development (SPEED) Program.  The Standard Offer was established as part of the Vermont Energy Act of 2009.In June, AllEarth Renewables’ CEO was named by Business Week as one of 25 of ‘America’s Most Promising Social Entrepreneurs.’  The company, which employs 26, earlier this month announced a partnership with four solar installers to provide distribution throughout Vermont.  AllEarth noted some of the partners in this project, which includes:VESCOMerchants BankJA MorisseyVermont Works for WomenTimberlineVHB EngineeringLandWorksDunkiel Saunders Elliott Raubvogel & HandGreen Mountain PowerEngineers Construction Inc. (ECI)Omega ElectricGrennon’s SolderingNSA IndustriesRennlineMainly MetalsNorth East PrecisionS.D. Ireland ConcreteFoxfire Energy CorporationWillis last_img read more

Federal regulators approve 690MW, $1 billion Gemini Solar Project, largest in U.S.

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Greentech Media:The U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) on Monday signed off on Nevada’s Gemini Solar Project, which could be the largest U.S. solar plant once constructed.In addition to topping the list as the largest solar project in the U.S., Gemini includes 380 megawatts of battery storage, part of a trend of mega-solar projects coming with significant storage attached. The project is being developed by Arevia Power, a California-based company run by SunEdison alums, and investment manager Quinbrook Infrastructure Partners.The project will serve NV Energy, part of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate, as the utility works to meet Nevada’s state requirement for 50 percent renewables by 2030 and 100 percent clean energy by 2050. The power would feed Las Vegas and potentially additional areas in Southern California.The federal government framed its approval as a way to strengthen the U.S. economy amid the coronavirus pandemic. “This action is about getting Americans back to work, strengthening communities and promoting investment in American energy,” said Casey Hammond, principal deputy assistant secretary at the DOI, in a statement.The project would become the eighth-largest solar plant in the world, according to the DOI’s statement.[Emma Foehringer Merchant]More: Trump administration approves $1B Gemini solar project in Nevada desert Federal regulators approve 690MW, $1 billion Gemini Solar Project, largest in U.S.last_img read more

Equinor sees peak oil coming by 2028

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:Oil firm Equinor expects global oil demand to peak by around 2027-2028, two-free years earlier than the company previously saw, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, it said on Tuesday.“Earlier assumptions for peak oil demand to happen around 2030 may be challenged,” Equinor said in its annual energy outlook.Equinor sees oil demand returning to the pre-pandemic level of around 100 million bpd by around 2025, and falling to 88 million bpd in 2050, under its central scenario, dubbed Reform. A year ago, it saw demand peaking just before 2030 at 105 million barrels per day (bpd), mainly due to electric cars denting demand for fossil fuels, and declining to 93 million bpd by 2050, under the same scenario.Supply constrains due to underinvestment could also impact the demand growth in the future, after oil firms cut investments by about 30% this year, the company said. “The consequence may be that billions of barrels of oil that were earlier assumed to be recoverable will not be developed,” Equinor added.Equinor said COVID-19 imposed changes on how people work and travel could have a long-lasting impact and slow oil demand growth, while deployment of renewable energy and electric cars would accelerate.“It is likely that demand for aviation fuels will suffer for many years to come, as the pandemic may have permanently altered the frequency with which we fly,” it said in the outlook.[Nerijus Adomaitis]More: Equinor sees oil demand peaking two-three years sooner due to virus Equinor sees peak oil coming by 2028last_img read more

Fire on the Mountain

first_imgHenri Grissino-Mayer sounded the warning for years that a catastrophic wildfire was liable to hit Gatlinburg, Tennessee.The University of Tennessee professor gave a talk in Gatlinburg a few years ago in which he noted the city sat at a wildland-urban interface, surrounded by steep slopes covered in overgrown, fire-prone vegetation.“I walked through Gatlinburg and looked at all the businesses and homes, and they’re all made of wood. I pointed to them and went, ‘Fuel fuel fuel fuel fuel,’” Grissino-Mayer says.A couple of years later, at the end of November, he returned to Gatlinburg—this time after a human-started wildfire escaped Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP) and slammed into the nearby tourist town, killing at least 14 people and destroying more than 700 houses and businesses.The fire was started within the park by two juveniles. It burned about 10,000 acres, along with another 6,000 acres outside the park. Strong winds blew embers from the wildfire onto the nearby town of Gatlinburg.The wildfire’s destruction of parts of Gatlinburg drew national attention, but the incident was only a crescendo to a wave of wildfire that’s burned more than 120,000 acres across the Southeast. Firefighters say that persistent drought conditions will likely lead to more wildfires in the region.The fall 2016 fire season well outpaced any in modern memory. Extreme drought and decades of fire suppression cocked the gun and arsonists pulled the trigger, unleashing wildfires that were propelled by gusty winds to consume a parched landscape.The fires around Gatlinburg, which launched smoke and ash that covered much of eastern Tennessee, “show the true extreme conditions we’re under and how bad it can get very quickly,” says Riva Duncan, the fire management officer for Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests in western North Carolina. “They had 70-mile-per-hour gusts ahead of the rain. In those conditions you can’t put aircraft in the air, you can’t put people in front of it. It’s an unfortunate situation.”The Smokies-Gatlinburg fire was one of 40 fires across Appalachia this fall. Arson accounted for 33 of the 40 fires. At least 14 people have been arrested and charged for intentionally setting fires.fire3_fixTennessee banned burning across the entire mountain region, and the state is offering a $2,500 reward for tips leading to arson arrests and convictions. Last year, Tennessee recorded twice the yearly average of wildfires, and arson accounted for 79 percent of the 43,000 acres burned.State law enforcement officials held a press conference in mid-November to announce the arrests of nine arsonists.“We take it personal when we watch the land burn in our counties,” said Tennessee Homeland Security Commissioner David Purkey. “And, to those who are doing this, let me be clear that we are coming for you and we are working on information that is going to lead to your arrest.”Of the nine Tennessee arrests, seven were men who mostly set fires along roads. The other two were juvenile females whose charges included vandalism over $1,000. Arson is a felony offense punishable by up to six years imprisonment and a $3,000 fine.“There is no ‘typical’ arsonist,” says Corinne Gould, the Tennessee Department of Agriculture’s assistant commissioner for public affairs. “Their reasons are greatly varied but can include boredom, anger at an individual or agency, or desire for the excitement one may derive from seeing first responders arrive and go to work.”In Kentucky, police in Letcher County arrested Johnny Mullins, a 21-year-old known for self-shot Facebook videos he called “Weather Outlook” that showed him speaking in front of multiple fires. Jenkins Police Chief James Stephens told the Associated Press that Mullins said he started at least one fire to gain attention for his Facebook videos.In North Carolina, one arrested arsonist, Keith Mann, explained that he was “bored” and “wanted to see something burn.”“I’d say 95 percent of fires here are human-caused,” says Duncan, the Forest Service official in western North Carolina. “That includes campfires left unattended and debris burning that gets away. This year I’d say 75 percent have been arson. There have been incendiary devices found. It’s not just one or two people running around, it’s several, and who knows the reasons why.”In October and November, North Carolina saw 35 fires burning nearly 57,000 acres on national forest and nearby lands. Duncan said the drought developed over the summer, setting the Forest Service up for an above-average fire season.“We started having small fires in September, which is early for us,” Duncan said. “We usually don’t go into our fall season until late October, with a peak in November when leaves come down. The leaves held on long this year, which makes things difficult.”The combination of high winds and dry conditions have created rapidly spreading fires that have occasionally leapt into the crowns of trees—a relatively rare phenomenon in eastern fires.“We’ve had dry fronts coming through with winds behind,” Duncan said. “That’s when we’ve had fires get up and run. We’ve actually had crown fires. If the slopes and fuel line up, it can happen. It’s caught a lot of people by surprise.”It didn’t catch Grissino-Mayer by surprise. He’s been warning against this kind of catastrophic fire for years, pointing to a build-up of fire-prone vegetation that’s resulted from many decades of fire-suppression.“You’ve got 80 years of fuel built up, especially on these slopes,” Grissino-Mayer says. “The fire races up these steep slopes, and by the time it gets to the top, there are crown fires.”In Gatlinburg, Grissino-Mayer saw potential for a similar phenomenon with buildings constructed too closely together in a pattern he calls “fire dominoes.”“All these houses are packed one against the other, trying to maximize dollars,” he says. “They build in a confined space going up the hill slope. Fire starts at one end and goes building to building.”Alarmingly, climatologists like Grissino-Mayer and Jennifer Marlon of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies warn that wildfire seasons will become less predictable as the climate continues to change.“We’re going into a new normal: more intense drought, more severe heat waves,” Marlon says. “It’s really happening. In the West, we know the length of the fire season is 70 days longer now. If you have this longer window when fires start and spread, you’re going to get more fires and more acreage burned.”Grissino-Mayer outlines a raft of possible solutions, beginning with loosening laws and policies to make it easier for agencies to carry out controlled burns. That’s easier said than done, not just because of local opposition but because of potential impacts on tourism in places like Gatlinburg.“If you light a fire and it stays controlled, it burns, what happens? Smoke,” Grissino-Mayer says. “You can’t have thousands of people at Dollywood on a smoky day. That’s where cities and federal agencies need to come together and develop a plan. Burning the area around Gatlinburg to remove understory vegetation will prevent catastrophic wildfires from happening. Prevention is the key here, not firefighting.”Grissino-Mayer also recommends that cities and counties change their land ordinances to discourage tightly built rows of houses built along steep, narrow roads that offer only one way out.The developers who build those communities “are trying to maximize profit,” he says. “But you can’t be money-driven anymore. You’ve got to be safety-driven. There need to be buffer zones with less fire potential.”Grissino-Mayer is skeptical that this will actually happen. The numbers of visitors and new residents that come with tightly built homes translates to money, and many communities will be loath to give up that tax revenue. That leaves it to the homeowners to be fire-smart when evaluating properties.“Fire has a long history in these forests,” he says. “Fire can occur today, and it will occur again in the future.”last_img read more

Millennials confident but chronically stressed about money

first_imgA majority of millennials (84%) are confident in their ability to manage their finances while 41% are “chronically stressed” about money, according to the latest report by Bank of America in collaboration with USA Today.In a statement, Andrew Plepler, executive, Global Corporate Social Responsibility at Bank of America commented, “Even though millennials are confident about money and focused on their finances, they’re still experiencing a great deal of stress. That’s due in part to factors out of their control – a volatile global economy, a changing job market and, to some extent, the student debt they’ve taken on.”Plepler emphasized that it is important for millennials to focus in they can control such as their level of financial knowledge and awareness during uncertainty.“This survey indicates there may be room for more effective financial management efforts that make it easier for millennials to take greater control of their finances, and hopefully alleviate some of the stress they feel,” said Plepler. continue reading » 60SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Chiefs’ Tyreek Hill does not face charges in child abuse probe, report says

first_imgCommissioner Roger Goodell announced in May that the league planned to interview Hill after a case involving Child Protection Services is resolved. The status of that case is unavailable.Hill caught 87 passes for 1,479 yards and 12 touchdowns for the Chiefs last season. Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe had already said April 25 he would not pursue charges against Hill. He said even though he believed that a crime had been committed, he couldn’t prove who did it.In an email to the Star on Friday, Howe said he stands by those comments. However, Howe did not address whether the investigation had ever been reopened. Chiefs coach Andy Reid said in late April that a criminal investigation into the incident had been reopened.“It is not an active investigation,” Howe said in the email. “As in any case, if we receive additional evidence we reevaluate.”Hill and the child’s mother, Crystal Espinal, Hill’s fiancee, reportedly temporarily lost custody of the child.The Chiefs suspended Hill for the “foreseeable future” in April after an audio recording surfaced of Hill allegedly threatening Espinal.Hill issued a statement that month saying he was “innocent of any crime.” His attorney, Trey Pettlon, told the Star the criminal case had been closed for a while.“It’s my understanding the criminal investigation has been closed for quite some time now and obviously there’s been some misinformation about that, but it is closed,” Pettlon said.However, Hill still faces possible punishment from the NFL. Prosecutors say the child abuse probe involving Chiefs’ Tyreek Hill is “not an active investigation,” meaning he faces no charges, the Kansas City Star reported Friday.The wide receiver had been the subject of an investigation following an alleged incident in March in which his 3-year-old son suffered a broken arm.last_img read more

YWCA Holds Annual Clothing Drive

first_imgFacebook9Tweet0Pin0 Submitted by the YWCA of OlympiaDid you find time for some spring cleaning? If so, the YWCA of Olympia will take your donations of gently used bagged clothing items for delivery to Value Village-Lacey in the month of June. This special once-per-year drive will begin on Monday, June 2nd and end on Monday, June 30th.  For each bag donated, Value Village-Lacey will make a donation directly to the YWCA of Olympia and their programs which empower women and girls.Clothing can be dropped off at the YWCA (220 Union Ave) in bags Monday through Thursday between the hours of 9:00am and 5:00pm between June 2 and June 30 ONLY.  The YWCA will take all donations to Value Village Lacey on Wednesday, July 2 and Value Village will donate back to the YWCA for every single donation you bring in!  The agency is working with Auto Mall Mini Storage for the entire month to secure and collect all of your generous donations. What are we looking for?ClothingShoesAccessories (Ties, belts, scarves, purses, socks, wallets)Bed & Bath (towels, sheets, drapes, yarn, pillows, blankets)We also welcome hygiene product donations of toothpaste for the Other BankFor more information contact (360) 352-0593 or ywca@ywcaofolympia.org.last_img read more