Solar Energy in the Midwest

 
Earth Day Seminars and solar building tour 2013Earth Day Warm-Up Saturday April 13, 2013
Seminar 
 
Attend our Solar Energy Investment Seminar at the Summit on the Park, 46000 Summit Pkwy Canton, MI 48188

Free! 10am -12noon Registration required Call: (734) 453-6746 to book a seat.  Map

Learn how solar can be the best investment you will make.
Solar works in Michigan and is a practical application for you and your family.

After the seminar join us for a tour of our solar powered building.
See, feel and touch solar in action!

Tour
Our solar powered building.
Doors open 11am – 2pm
Free, Open to all
Ask questions

On the Tour

  • 5.1 kW grid tied solar electric (PV) system
  • 2 styles of solar space heating
  • Solar hot water
  • Solatubes with new designer lenses
  • Solar attic fan
  • New this year! An Indoor Battery back-up generator. Never go down with the grid again – works anywhere there is a plug. Add solar power to it and qualify for 30% Federal Tax Credit on the solar system.
  • Watch videos of local solar homeowners share their experience of living with solar. Some of these will be on the tour. Find out how many are getting negative utility bills and actually receiving checks from the utility companies.
  • Bring your utility bills and see how solar works for you.
  • 563 MWh of electricity generated by our installations since Jan 2010. That’s enough to power the Michigan Stadium for 2.5 years.
 

Sign up today and reserve your seat. (734) 453-6746

 

Postcode Lottery Green Challenge – Home.

The Postcode Lottery Green Challenge is the largest annual worldwide competition for sustainable entrepreneurs who can instigate change. The challenge is looking for products or services that combine sustainability, entrepreneurship and creativity.

 

The products or services should:

1. Reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by an amount you can roughly estimate

2. Be developed enough to execute

3. Be realisable as usable product or service within the next two years

4. Preferably have integrated Cradle2Cradle principles in their designs

Besides these criteria, the jury will also look at factors as: Communication potential, courageousness and creativity.

 

Entry for the seventh edition of this competition will be open from 17 April – 17 July 2013. Sign up for the newsletter and stay informed of the latest developments!

The Cost Of Not Using Renewable Energy : Renewable Energy News :.

Not using renewable energy for electricity production is costing future generations over $9 billion a day – and that doesn’t costs associated with health impacts and climate change.

Solar naysayers have often used cost as a reason for not making the switch – an argument rapidly running out of steam given the plummeting prices of solar panels. Something else worth considering is the cost of not going solar.

For example, rapidly increasing electricity prices can make installing solar panels a better investment than putting money in the bank for many households.

Do you want to pay $1,000/month to have water shipped to your home? Only 2% of the earth has fresh water, if we pollute this where will we buy the water from?

THE WMEAC BLOG

Photo -   In this Nov. 26, 2012 photo, Steve Lipsky demonstrates how his well water ignites when he puts a flame to the flowing well spigot outside his family's home in rural Parker County near Weatherford, Texas. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency had evidence a gas company's drilling operation contaminated Lipsky's drinking water with explosive methane, and possibly cancer-causing chemicals, but withdrew its enforcement action, leaving the family with no useable water supply, according to a report obtained by The Associated Press. The EPA's decision to roll back its initial claim that hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” operations had contaminated the water is the latest case in which the federal agency initially linked drilling to water contamination and then softened its position, drawing criticism from Republicans and industry officials who insisted they proved the agency was inefficient and too quick to draw conclusions. (AP Photo/LM Otero)  In 2010 the Lipskys and one other family in an upscale neighborhood near Fort Worth, Tex., complained to officials when their water from the faucet started bubbling.  The family’s water contained so much methane in it that water from the garden hose outside could be lit on fire.

Concerned for methane and cancer-causing benzene contamination the EPA immediately cautioned the two households to stop using the water and ordered the nearby natural gas drilling company, Range Resources, to clean up the wells and provide clean water to the families.

Range Resources started drilling in the area only a mile away from the Lipskys home in 2009. The company then commissioned an independent scientist named Geoffrey Thyne to analyze the water and determine if the contamination could have been caused by the drilling for natural gas called hydraulic fracturing, or more commonly referred to as “fracking.”  Thyne analyzed water from…

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Report: Solar Could Meet All The World’s Electricity Needs In 2050 Using Under One Percent Of World’s Land | ThinkProgress.

Highlighting the fact that a global switch to renewable energy is not just necessary, but doable, a new report released by the WWF concludes that the solar arrays necessary to meet all the world’s projected energy needs in 2050 would cover under one percent of global land area. Obviously this is a theoretical exercise, and 100 percent of the planet’s electricity needs are not actually going to be filled through solar. But several credible scenarios suggest that solar could provide about 30 percent of global total electricity in 2050, up from the 0.1 percent it provides now.

By going through the numbers, the Solar PV Atlas demonstrates both the practical feasibility of renewable energy, and the possibility of harmonizing solar energy with conservation goals:

The atlas considers electricity demands in seven diverse regions and calculates the area (land or roof) that would be needed for PV to meet these demands. In each of these cases, less than one per cent of the region’s total land cover would be required to host solar PV panels in order to meet one hundred per cent of the region’s projected electricity needs in 2050, taking into account solar resources and predicted electricity consumption and demographic changes. […]  Full Article

Belgium Plans to Build Island to Store Excess Wind Energy | Renewable Energy News Article. By Renewable Energy World Editors
January 21, 2013

Government officials are confident that the island will solve intermittency issues that commonly occur in renewable energy production, such as wind and solar. The island will use a pumped-hydro system to store excess wind energy generated during off-peak hours, which will then be used to help satisfy the demand during hours when the wind isn’t blowing….

….”We have a lot of energy from the windmills and sometimes it just gets lost because there isn’t enough demand for the electricity,” said a spokeswoman for Belgium’s North Sea minister Johan Vande Lanotte to Reuters. Vande Lanotte revealed the plans last week during a presentation at the Belgian port of Zeebrugge.

For full article

Renewable Energy Provides Half of All New US Electrical Generating Capacity in 2012 | Renewable Energy News Article.

Wind led the way in 2012 with 164 new “units” totaling 10,689 MW followed by solar with 240units totaling 1,476 MW. Biomass added 100 new units totaling 543 MW while geothermal steam and water each had 13 new units with installed capacities of 149 MW and 99 MW respectively.

By comparison, for the full 12 months of 2012, new natural gas generation in service totaled 8,746 MW (33.15%) followed by coal (4,510 MW – 17.09%), nuclear (125 MW – 0.47%), and oil (49 MW – 0.19%).

For full article go here

New State Study Demonstrates Net Metering Benefit for Ratepayers 

By Andrew Savage
January 21, 2013

The body of evidence that demonstrates the benefits of solar net metering to retail electric customers continues to grow.

 

From California and Texas to New York and now Vermont, there is a growing stack of reports that make the financial case for greater deployment of distributed solar generation and net metering.

 

On the same day that a Vote Solar Initiative report was released, which found that in California solar net metering provides over $92 million in annual benefits to ratepayers, a newly published Vermont report echoed the same growing body of evidence that documents the benefits of solar net metering.

 

recent report on New York found that solar PV delivers between a 15-cent and 40-cent benefit to ratepayers and taxpayers.  Another report from Texas by the analysts at the The Brattle Group found that the total customer benefits of adding solar capacity in the Lone Star State was valued at more than $520 million.

The Vermont legislature charged the report author, the Vermont Department of Public Service, with determining if there is a cross-subsidization with… For full article go here

Ontario Goes Coal-Free

Ontario Goes Coal-Free.

By the end of this year, Ontario will be the first jurisdiction in North America to have shut down all its coal plants, making it much healthier to breathe.

Yesterday, the government announced two more large power plants would close by the end of this year, ahead of schedule. At their peak, the Lambton and Nanticoke Generating Stations produced 4,000 megawatts (MW), among the largest in the world. And just a decade ago, Ontario got 25% of its electricity from coal.

For full article go here

THE WMEAC BLOG

By Gary Wilson Great Lakes Echo

“I hope you rethink your really scary plan to bury radioactive waste located only half a mile from Lake Huron…”

That’s a concerned citizen responding to a Canadian nuclear power company’s proposal to store radioactive waste underground near Lake Huron for 100,000 years.

The best-known near shore threats to the Great Lakes are raw sewage and algae blooms. Both receive considerable attention from government agencies and accounts about them are regularly reported in the popular media.

The threat posed by the nuclear power plants that dot the region could easily trump both. It may be the ultimate near shore threat.

There are 33 nuclear reactors in the Great Lakes region, many of them near the water’s edge such as Palisades in Michigan.

After a seeming dormant period of public concern about nuclear power risks, awareness increased this past year. The Fukushima Japan meltdown is…

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