U.S. solar power capacity to expand by record 32 GW in 2023, report says
Reuters – September 7
The U.S. solar industry expects to add a record 32 GW of production capacity this year, up 53% on new capacity in 2022 and helped by investment incentives under the Inflation Reduction Act, a new report from the Solar Energy Industries Association and Wood Mackenzie shows. The report estimates that total operating solar capacity would grow from 153 GW currently to 375 GW by 2028 as supply chain challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and restrictive trade policies abate. Increased investment in domestic manufacturing could see U.S. solar module production grow tenfold by 2026 if all new factory plans materialize, Wood Mackenzie said.
Appeals court will hear challenge to California's new rooftop solar rules
KPBS – September 14
California's 1st District Court of Appeal in San Francisco will hear a legal challenge to the state’s recently adopted rooftop solar rules. Three groups challenged the California Public Utilities Commission’s decision to slash the value of electricity generated from solar panels and install $15 monthly fees for residents who add solar panels to their rooftops. The CPUC voted last December to approve rules that took effect in April.
Energy storage project announced to serve California grid
Power Magazine – September 7
An energy storage project in Southern California will provide resource adequacy and ancillary services to the state’s power grid, adding more reliability and resiliency for electricity in the California Independent System Operator market. LS Energy Solutions will deploy 200 MW/400 MWh of storage capacity at the Big Rock project in Imperial County. Gore Street Energy Storage Fund is developing the project. Commercial operation is expected to begin in the second half of 2024.
Mote reveals plans for biomass-to-hydrogen plant in California
Renewable Energy Magazine – September 7
As more utilities, industries, and transportation providers look to clean hydrogen to reduce carbon emissions, Mote Inc. has received $1.2 million in grant funding from the U.S. Forest Service, the California Department of Conservation, and the California Department of Forestry to establish its second biomass to hydrogen and carbon sequestration plant in partnership with the Sacramento Municipal Utility District. Similar to its first project near Bakersfield, this second plant will integrate with carbon capture and geological sequestration methods to produce carbon-negative hydrogen.
BOEM completes Empire Wind EIS
ReNews – September 11
The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has completed its environmental review of the proposed Empire Wind Farm Projects off the New York coast, which would have a combined capacity of 2,076 MW. Equinor and BP JV Empire Wind propose to construct two offshore wind projects, known as Empire Wind 1 and Empire Wind 2, in its lease area located about 12 nautical miles (nm) south of Long Island, New York, and about 16.9 nm east of Long Branch, New Jersey. BOEM plans to issue a Record of Decision on whether to approve the projects, and if so, identify conditions of approval, this fall.
Dimension Renewable Energy secures $237 million for 120 MW community solar projects
PV-Tech – September 12
Dimension Renewable Energy has closed a $237 million financing, which will support a 120 MW distributed generation portfolio. The portfolio consists of 28 solar projects located across New York State, New Jersey, Virginia, and California, with over half of the portfolio dedicated to serving low-and-moderate income households. Silicon Valley Bank acted as lead debt syndicator, with NT Solar and Advantage Capital arranging the tax equity.
Red Mesa Tapaha Solar Farm opens
San Juan Record – September 5
Navajo Nation officials celebrated the opening of the Red Mesa Tapaha Solar Farm with a ribbon cutting on August 25. The 550-acre solar farm, developed by the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority (NTUA) and located near the Utah-Arizona border, is slated to provide 72 MW of solar energy. “This facility is the first of its kind,” said NTUA General Manager Walter Haase. “It’s the first time that solar renewable energy project on the Navajo Nation and owned by the Navajo people is generating electricity to be sold to communities off the Navajo Nation,” he added.
Solar parts manufacturer expands Las Vegas facility
Las Vegas Review-Journal – September 11
Over the last nine months a solar parts manufacturer has added 100 jobs at its Las Vegas facility and plans to add another 100 by the end of next year. Unimacts is celebrating the expansion of its Las Vegas facility that brings the company’s total manufacturing space in Las Vegas to 127,000 square feet.