Geothermal Energy News Archive
  • German Parliament Reforms Renewable Energy Law

    by Henry Kaplan | Jul 11, 2014
    Germany’s changes to its renewable energy law passed in the upper house of parliament and is expected to go into effect in August. The law will cut back on renewable energy subsidies, and will change the way the remaining subsidies are funded. Germany has had some of the strongest support for renewable energy of any country, but with this reform, they are rolling that back. The Wall Street Journal explains the rationale...
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  • Washington State Funds Giant Batteries for Renewable Energy

    by Henry Kaplan | Jul 09, 2014
    With a 3.2 million grant from the State of Washington, Avista Corp will be testing out utility scale batteries. They received the grant last week. It comes from a $14 million pool of grant money to integrate renewable energy into Washington’s energy grid...
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  • Some Renewable Energy Companies Fail, but That Doesn’t Mean Much

    by Henry Kaplan | Jul 08, 2014
    Following the Obama administration’s latest round of loan guarantees for renewable energy projects, Michael Grunwald has an essay in Time analyzing the loan guarantee program, and what it means after the Solyndra collapse...
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  • Hawaii’s Governor Calls for More Geothermal Power

    by Henry Kaplan | Jul 03, 2014
    Renewable energy thrives in remote communities, far from widespread power grids and infrastructure. From Hawaii to Alaska to the Caribbean, these distant communities are hungry for new sources of energy. They push the technology forward. And as the technology moves forward, new sources of energy open up new parts of the world to live and work in.
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  • How Affordable is Renewable Energy?

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 26, 2014
    The price of solar power and other renewables is falling. But is renewable energy a good deal for the average ratepayer? A few recent reports from state agencies tried to answer this question.
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  • Nest Opens Up Its Smart Thermostats to Developers

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 25, 2014
    For a “smart grid” company, Nest isn’t all that interested in updating the power grid itself. It’s really something closer to a smart energy use company. The Google-owned company makes small devices for managing a household or officeplace – devices like computerized thermostats, smoke alarms, and as of last week, security cameras. They promise that their thermostats will increase the energy efficiency of a building by carefully scheduling heating and cooling based on your schedule and automatically adjusting your energy use when you’re not home...
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  • Supreme Court Gives the EPA Most of the Authority it Wants over Greenhouse Gas

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 24, 2014
    The Supreme Court has issued their opinion on an EPA case originally filed last year. The issue at hand is the way that the EPA interprets the Clean Air Act with regards to greenhouse gas emissions. (That’s an issue that shouldn’t be confused with the EPA’s recent clean power plan, which won’t be affected by this ruling.) The short version of the ruling is that the court just slightly curtailed the EPA’s regulatory reach, an outcome that the EPA and their supporters seem pleased with...
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  • DOE Launches Renewable Energy Incubator Initiative

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 23, 2014
    The U.S. Department of Energy just launched what they’re calling a national support network for renewable energy entrepreneurs and small businesses. The National Incubator Initiative for Clean Energy is funding a renewable energy accelerator and is giving awards to technology incubators...
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  • Legislation and Policy News Roundup – June 13, 2014

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 13, 2014
    As always, renewable energy bills are working their way through legislative bodies around the country and world. Here’s the latest...
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  • Why Tesla Wants Other Companies to Use Their Tech for Free

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 13, 2014
    Electric car company Tesla announced yesterday that they are making all of their patents available to their competitors. CEO Elon Musk said in a blog post that they are applying “open source philosophy” to their patents. But they're not acting purely altruistically...
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  • In Remote Nome, Alaska, Geothermal Power Might Solve Energy Troubles

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 12, 2014
    The road network leading out of Nome, Alaska, will take you to the Alaskan wilderness. But it won’t take you Juneau or Anchorage. The town has no road connection to any major Alaskan cities. Nome’s energy infrastructure matches its transportation infrastructure. Without connection to a wide-spread energy grid, it misses out on the benefits of a carefully managed network of power sources and distribution systems...
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  • Google Wants to Push Into Energy Infrastructure

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 11, 2014
    Google has already put plenty of time and money into energy infrastructure. Their investment in the Ivanpah solar farm and their acquisition of Nest, a company that makes networked, energy-smart home appliances, comes to mind. Now, Bloomberg is reporting that Google is designing software and hardware to manage power lines and other energy infrastructure...
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  • The Duck Chart Explains Why Europe Can’t Use All The Renewable Energy They Will Generate

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 10, 2014
    Here’s the second story of the day about the challenge of integrating renewable energy into an existing power grid. Between new renewable energy sources and old power plants, Bloomberg is predicting that Europe will experience an oversupply of power in the next few months. And because traditional power plants can’t be switched off and on quickly, renewable power sources like wind turbines will likely be put on hold...
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  • 5 Reasons Apple and Google Are Making Their Own Renewable Energy

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 05, 2014
    Companies like Apple, Google, Facebook, and Ikea make stuff for consumers. They’re not in the energy business. So why are they building, buying, and investing in renewable energy projects?
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  • Looking Past the Numbers on the EPA’s Power Plant Emission Goals

    by Henry Kaplan | Jun 03, 2014
    Expect to hear a lot more about yesterday’s new power plant emission rule from the EPA. Their proposed regulation would set different goals for each state, based on the current plans and trends, to push each state to do more than they would without the rule. There’s a huge range of requirements from state to state. Washington will need to cut their emission intensity by a massive 71.8 percent, while Maine needs to cut just 13.5%, a much smaller shift. (These cuts are all relative to a 2005 baseline.)
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