Adam Browning

Adam Browning is the executive director of Vote Solar.

David Roberts is getting what he wished for

Let the era of solar wholesale distributed generation begin

David Roberts wants to see distributed generation taken seriously. He’s getting his wish. Let the era of solar wholesale distributed generation begin. Last Thursday, the California Public Utilities Commission approved a resolution to implement the auction portion of Southern California Edison’s Distributed Generation PV program. This is a big deal–the door is now open for a competitive bidding process for 250 MW of solar photovoltaics from independent solar developers (of 1 to 2 MW in size, 90% of which must be rooftop) over the next few years. First auctions should begin in the next month or two. More importantly, this …

Wild and Scenic

If you are reading this, you are likely sitting in front of a computer.  Which will make it easy to do yourself this favor: open your calendar, scroll forward about a year, and circle the date of the next Wild and Scenic film festival.  I just spent the past few days in Nevada City, CA–and recommend that next year, you do too. Reason number one: the town is awesome.  It’s a Hallmark-perfect (literally) former mining town in the California goldcountry that’s handled touristification with grace (still more dive-bars than scented-candle shops, burgeoning sustainable ag movement to keep it real, tons …

More solar gen in two thousand and ten

2010 outlook for solar in California

Felix Kramer of Calcars thinks 2010 will be the year of the plug-in car. He’s got a good case: after years of advocacy and technology development, 2010 is the year that major manufacturers will finally make plug-ins broadly available, and rapidly decreasing battery costs are helping the conversion industry reach new customers and help retrofit the existing fleet at scale. After years of work and promise, 2010 is the payoff year. I see a similar trend in solar in California, where years of policy and business development are all coming together to make 2010 an extraordinary year for solar development. …

Freeing the grid

It’s that time of year again … no, not when turduckens appear on dinner tables nationwide and it becomes somehow acceptable to call the marshmallow a vegetable. It’s time for the 2009 edition of “Freeing the Grid,” an annual report card to states on their net metering and interconnection standards. Together, these two key policies empower energy customers (that’s you) to go solar and reduce your utility bills. Although there is still plenty of room for improvement, this year’s report shows solid progress across most states — an indicator that these once-obscure policies are becoming accepted best practices. Oregon was …

New York passes clean energy financing bill

The New York State Legislature has not, of late, been able to agree on anything — the budget, same-sex marriage, and even, for awhile, which party was in the majority. But there is one thing they are unanimous about: clean energy finanancing. Last night, by a vote of 192-0, the famously combative body passed S66004-a/A 4000A-a, a bill that enables municipalities in the state to set up special financing districts to help residents finance investments in energy efficiency and solar.  Called Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE), it’s a model that allows cities to issue bonds to help residents finance investments …

Supermodels doing their part for the climate change cause

Apparently, a group of supermodels were on their way to a strip poker game when someone convinced them to say a few words in support of everyone’s favorite climate organization, 350.org.  Video here.    

They are asking for it, really asking for it

LADWP asks public for input on solar plans

When it comes to sustainability, Los Angeles has its work cut out for it. Sure, they are world leaders in recycling … if you count dialogue. Or plot lines. But it is going to take awhile for the famously car-centric city to develop climate-friendly transit, and the utility is the dirtiest in the state. So it is welcome news to see the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power continue to work on solar initiatives. You may remember last spring, when Measure B failed at the polls. This was widely seen as a referendum on the process, not on solar …

Does the Wall Street Journal employ anyone who understands energy markets?

Actually, I think they do.  I think Keith Johnson knows quite a bit about energy markets.  Which makes this hit job on solar subsidies, published before the Senate considers national renewable energy legislation, so disturbing. After chronicling the problems of the Spanish solar industry, the article goes on to say: “Clean-energy skeptics, however, point to Spain as a cautionary tale of a government policy that created a speculative bubble with disastrous consequences. Some Republicans have cited Spain’s solar bubble and bust as an example of how unsustainable government clean-energy pushes are … California and New Jersey, which lead the U.S. …

A market-based feed-in tariff

California proposes new program for 1 GW of renewables

The California Public Utilities Commission issued a new proposal today designed to significantly increase the amount of solar energy installed in the state. It is kind of like a feed-in tariff, but different.  Call it a feed-in tariff v2.0. The proposed program would require utilities to purchase electricity from mid-size solar and other renewable energy technologies of 1 to 10 MW.  At least twice a year, utilities would issue a request for proposals for qualifying renewable projects.  The regulatory body would set a revenue requirement for each solicitation (i.e. the total amount of money that could be spent).  Utilities would …

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