Renewable Energy Update -- June 26, 2012

Renewable Energy Focus

Solyndra close to filing bankruptcy plan

The Vacaville Reporter - Jun 16

A California-based solar panel manufacturer that received a half-billion dollar loan from the federal government before filing for bankruptcy protection is close to filing a proposal for what to do next. An attorney for Solyndra LLC told a Delaware judge Friday that he expects to file a bankruptcy plan in the next two or three weeks, and that Solyndra has reached an agreement in principle with a majority of its major creditors. Solyndra has failed to find a buyer to operate the company and is liquidating its assets.

Controversial clean power line is finally live

Earth2Tech Blog - Jun 18

It was a project that took five years to fight off critics and secure regulatory permits. But now the Sunrise Powerlink — a transmission line to ferry clean power like solar and wind from California’s desert to its southern coastal region — is done and live, according to its owner San Diego Gas & Electric on Monday. The nearly $1.9 billion project erected giant towers and built both above ground and underground cables that now run over 110 miles from Imperial Valley to San Diego’s territory.

Iberdrola cutting down its U.S. business

Sustainable Business Oregon News - Jun 18

Iberdrola Renewables is trimming development projects from its pipeline and may be looking to sell some of its wind farms as its parent company reevaluates its U.S. business. Based in Portland, Iberdrola Renewables scrapped plans for two South Dakota wind farms, a planned total of 500 megawatts, citing economic conditions including depressed energy costs.

U.S. Barring Efforts to Circumvent Duties on Chinese Solar Imports

Solar Thermal Magazine - Jun 19

In the wake of affirmative preliminary antidumping (AD) and countervailing duty (CVD) determinations by the Department of Commerce, some Chinese solar cell and panel exporters are reportedly planning to evade lawfully owed AD and CVD duties of up to 250 percent, according to the Coalition for American Solar Manufacturing (CASM). According to CASM, any attempt to evade the AD/CVD orders will not be effective, could be illegal and may expose U.S. importers , in addition to Chinese exporters , to liability under U.S. law, including significant financial penalties and criminal prosecution.

Ormat CEO Dita Bronicki testifies on the DOE loan guarantee program

Think Geo Energy News - Jun 20

In an appearance in front of the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight, and Government Spending Hearing, the CEO of Ormat, Dita Bronicki, provided an overview on her company and its view on the loan guarantee.

DuPont sues SolarWorld for patent infringement

Sustainable Business Oregon News - Jun 21

The DuPont Co. filed a lawsuit in federal court Wednesday accusing SolarWorld Industries America Inc. for infringing on a DuPont patent for a metal compound used in making solar energy cells. The case filed in U.S. District Court in Portland also targets Heraeus Materials Technology LLC, a Conshohocken, Pa.-based processor of precious metals.

Vestas closing Houston office to save costs

Sustainable Business Oregon News - Jun 15

The Houston research center for the world’s largest wind turbine manufacturer, Vestas Wind Systems, will be moved to another U.S. location, a casualty of the Denmark-based company’s effort to reduce fixed costs by more than $189 million at the end of this year. A company spokesman confirmed this week that the Houston office, which had 75 employees at its peak in 2011, is on a list for closure.

Notable Renewable Energy Projects and Deals

Another lawsuit filed against Ocotillo Wind Express

Imperial Valley Press Online - Jun 21

Lawsuits against the controversial renewable energy project consisting of 112 wind turbines east of Ocotillo seem to keep piling up. The latest lawsuit was filed last week by the Community Advocates For Renewable Energy Stewardship against the Department of the Interior, the Bureau of Land Management and the project’s owner, Pattern Energy. This lawsuit calls for injunctive relief to stop construction of the Ocotillo Express Wind Energy Facility, while claiming the project lacked the necessary legal requirements when obtaining the federal right-of-way.

Solar energy project approved on tribal land near Las Vegas

Las Vegas Sun News - Jun 21

The federal government on Thursday approved a massive 350-megawatt solar energy project to be built on land in Clark County belonging to the Moapa Band of Paiute Indians Tribe. It would be the first utility-scale solar project on tribal lands. The project, covering about 2,000 acres, would be located 30 miles north of Las Vegas and occupy about 3 percent of the tribe’s land, which is held in trust by the U.S. government. The operation would generate enough electricity to power 100,000 homes.

enXco Announces Solar Module Supply Agreement With First Solar

Solar Thermal Magazine - Jun 20

enXco, an EDF Energies Nouvelles Company, last week announced that they have signed a solar module supply agreement with First Solar Inc. First Solar will deliver 61 megawatts peak (MWp) of thin film modules starting in September 2012 for enXco’s Catalina Solar Project located in Kern County, California. Catalina Solar will be built in two phases — the first phase of approximately 60 MWp is targeted to go online by the end of 2012 and the remainder of the project by June 2013.

Clo Goes Solar with Cogenra

eSolar Energy News - Jun 20

Cogenra Solar, a provider of distributed solar cogeneration systems today announced its first dairy solar cogeneration system at the Clover Stornetta Farms Dairy Processing Plant in Petaluma, California. The solar cogeneration system is the company’s latest renewable energy initiative and will not only reduce Clover’s greenhouse gas emissions, but will also result in more than 50% energy savings at the plant.

New solar project makes San Antonio energy goal shine

Solar Energy - Jun 20

An almost 20-megawatt solar installation at the Dos Rios Water Recycling Center has catapulted San Antonio, Texas, to the no.1 spot in the state for solar. The city is ahead of the rest of Texas with a total of 34.2 megawatts of installed solar. But the utility isn’t stopping there. Moreno said CPS has a goal of reaching 1,500 megawatts of renewable energy by 2020.

Nevada Geothermal Power completes independent resource review of New Truckhaven project

Think Geo Energy News - Jun 20

Canadian TSX-Venture listed geothermal developer Nevada Geothermal Power Inc. (NGP) announced “that it has completed a comprehensive independent review of all resource information for the New Truckhaven project that provides an updated resource assessment and estimation of electrical power generation capacity of the field." The report concludes that the Indicated Geothermal Resource is of a sufficient size to proceed with the development of an initial net 27 MWe binary power plant at New Truckhaven.

El Paso Electric, SunEdison inaugurate Las Cruces solar farm in New Mexico

Energy Business Review - Jun 20

El Paso Electric Company and SunEdison, a subsidiary of MEMC Electronic Materials, have inaugurated a 12MW solar power plant in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Spread over 140 acres, the new Las Cruces Centennial Solar Farm, which was activated in May, is located near Las Cruces International Airport. The solar farm uses more than 48,000 of MEMC's Silvantis P280 photovoltaic modules which are expected to generate more than 32 million kilowatt hours of solar energy in the first year and will eventually rise to 773 million kilowatt hours in the next 25 years.

$1.3 million awarded for AZ renewable energy projects

Navajo-Hopi Observer Latest News - Jun 19

The agencies that oversee the Arizona Renewable Energy Investment Fund (REIF) have awarded eight Native American organizations with $1.3 million to build renewable energy systems in their communities. The projects include wind and solar facilities for schools in Leupp and Kayenta, solar power for an assisted-living facility in Moenkopi and solar panels for a housing project in Peach Springs.

CPS Energy Completes 19.8MW Solar Project

Solar Novus - Jun 19

CPS Energy 's newest source of solar energy, the William R. Sinkin Centennial Solar Farms 1 and 2, is a 19.8 megawatt (MW) project that will produce enough clean power for an estimated 2550 average Texas (US) homes annually. The two sites feature a total of 83,034 photovoltaic (PV) solar panels that track the sun from east to west. The solar arrays are located on nearly 200 acres of land at the Dos Rios Water Recycling Centre owned by the San Antonio Water System (SAWS), San Antonio, Texas.

New North American Concentrated Solar Manufacturing Facility in San Diego, California Recieves Funding

Solar Thermal Magazine - Jun 18

Soitec, a world leader in generating and manufacturing revolutionary semiconductor materials for the electronics and energy industries, announced today that one of its US Solar Energy subsidiaries has been selected by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to receive a SUNPATH award in the amount of $25 million to support its new North American solar manufacturing facility in San Diego, California.

SunPower Solar Power System Makes News For Bloomberg

eSolar Energy News - Jun 18

SunPower Corp. today announced the completion of a 1.8-megawatt solar power system for Bloomberg in New Jersey. The eight-acre, ground-mounted solar tracking system is generating the equivalent of 58 percent of electricity demand at the 100,000-square-foot main building at Bloomberg's Skillman, N.J. campus.

340-foot windmill at Anheuser-Busch

North Bay Business Journal - Jun 18

Supplementing utility power according to the on-site renewable distributed energy generation model is a growing trend in the private sector, evidenced by the new 340-foot tall wind turbine at the Anheuser-Busch brewery off Interstate 80. The turbine generates 1,500 kilowatts of electricity, or 3,500 megawatt hours per year — 20 percent of the facility’s total electricity needs — enough power to produce 25,000 cases of beer per day. This clean renewable source provides sufficient energy to power 399 homes, with a carbon offset benefit of 3,003 tons per year. The 700,000 square foot Anheuser-Busch plant produces 4.4 million barrels of beer annually, or 136 million gallons. It will utilize 100 percent of the wind energy generated and will not route power back to the grid.

Hoku CEO resigns to chair company restructuring

KHON2 News - Jun 16

Honolulu-based commercial solar power company Hoku Corp. says its chief executive officer is resigning and that it is exploring selling subsidiary Hoku solar. Scott Paul has been CEO since 2010. He will resign on June 30 and continue as a director and chairman of a newly formed restructuring committee. The five-member committee will oversee and direct the company's efforts to restructure its liabilities.

William R. Devine
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