This week in renewable energy: 6/15/14

Every week, Community Renewable Energy shares important clean energy developments– and some that are just plain cool.

Global progress

  • A little over a year ago, the White House unveiled the Power Africa initiative. Today, Power Africa is recognizing the value of micro-grid and off-grid solutions to improve rural electrification. Learn more about micro-grid technology here.
  • Meanwhile, Equatorial Guinea will establish a micro-grid solar power system.
  • Despite construction and budget issues, Brazil’s Mineirão stadium is a huge success in at least one respect– its integration of solar power. In fact, the World Cup is kicking off with “6,000 solar panels, Mineirão is the first World Cup stadium ever powered by solar energy. The plant’s installed capacity of 1,600 megawatts-hour per year (1.4 MW) is enough to power 1,200 households, according to the Brazilian federal government’s World Cup website.” (Think Progress)

Climate change public policy

  • President Obama’s UC Irvine’s commencement address focused on the challenge that climate change presents. (From the Wall Street Journal: “President Barack Obama on Saturday renewed his call to curb carbon emissions, saying the scientific debate on climate change is over and announcing a nearly $1 billion competition to fund measures coping with the effects of extreme weather.”) Watch more below, via C-SPAN.

Community solar

  • New York state’s legislature is moving toward boosting shared solar opportunities for renters and others not able to invest in solar power on their property. EcoWatch writes: “The bill would let New York residents to subscribe to a local renewable energy project elsewhere in their community and receive credits on their utility bills in return. It’s not the same as having panels on your roof, but it gives more people a role in making communities more sustainable.”
  • The Interstate Renewable Energy council celebrates the success of solar power in the first quarter of this year and they also emphasize the importance of shared solar. They point out that “The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) believes that in some areas of the country, as little as 25 percent of homes may be suitable for a PV system, due to physical limitations of rooftops, poor building orientation, and/or inadequate solar resources. Other hurdles that stand between residents and solar can include building ownership, easements and building restrictions, upfront costs of system ownership, and difficulties in obtaining financing.”

What do you think was the most important renewable energy story this week? Share your insights and thoughts below or by email.

For news about sustainable community and economic development, visit Praxia Partners’ blog.

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