Archive for August 22, 2012

Xcel Energy announces successful launch, quick close of the Solar*Reward Community standard offer

Community Solar Garden Structure

Xcel Energy was seeking approximately 4.5 megawatts of generation, from systems less than or equal to 500 kilowatts; it received approximately three times that amount in applications in about 30 minutes after the program opened at 8 a.m. MDT today. Acceptance of applications ended after an hour.

The Solar*Rewards Community standard offer was designed for Colorado customers who could not, for various reasons, take advantage of other solar programs, because they were renting, lived in multi-family dwellings or did not have homes or businesses suitable for solar installations. Customers are now able to purchase renewable energy through solar project developers from a community-based photovoltaic system.
“The success of this initial offering and the fact that it subscribed so quickly clearly shows that this is a beneficial and desirable program for our Colorado customers,” said David Eves, president & CEO of Public Service Company of Colorado, an Xcel Energy company. “Solar*Rewards Community makes solar energy available to a new, broad group of customers and we are pleased with the interest shown today.”

Details about the Xcel program

KUB is seeking applications for board member

The Knoxville Utilities Board oversees over 400,000 customers in Knoxville and the surrounding counties. It is seeking qualified applicants. If you meet the following, think of applying especially if you are passionate about the type of fuel used to generate your electricity..

Eligibility Requirements
Applicant must be at least 25 years of age.
Applicant must have resided in Knox County for the past three consecutive years.
Applicant cannot be an elected official or an employee of the City of Knoxville or any municipality, county government, or state government except for a Notary Public, a member of the National Guard of the State of Tennessee, or employee of public education.
Applicant may not be an employee or retiree of a utility or energy company.
Applicant cannot be related to a KUB employee where the relationship is as close as third degree by blood, adoption, or marriage.

KUB is a progressive utility that gets its electricity from TVA and so indirectly, you will have a voice in the future of the types of energy we choose. The application can be found here. Fill out the form and submit. Applications must be received by 5 pm on September 13th.

I was going to apply until I came to the exclusion of being a retiree of a utility having retired from TVA.

TVA’s CEO Tom Kilgore is Retiring

TVA CEO Tom Kilgore announced Thursday that he will retire, and the agency’s board will hire an executive search firm to find his successor.

That firm will presumably consider outside candidates, but here’s a look at the top executives who are already on the agency’s roster.

The following executives are all direct reports to Kilgore, according to TVA spokesman Travis Brickey.

— Kim Greene, executive vice president and chief generation officer (pictured).
Greene’s portfolio includes coal operations, gas operations, generation construction, and power supply & fuels.
A native of Knoxville, she previously served as the agency’s CFO and came to TVA in 2007 from Southern Company. Greene (pictured) earned a bachelor’s in engineering science and mechanics from UT, a master’s degree in biomedical engineering from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and an MBA from Samford University.

— Joe Hoagland, senior vice president of policy and oversight.
Hoagland’s portfolio includes communications, compliance and policy governance, security and emergency management, and dam safety governance.
He previously served as vice president of the office of the CEO, and has been a TVA employee since 1993. Hoagland earned a bachelor’s in chemistry from Southern Utah University and master’s and doctorate degrees in physical chemistry from Washington State University.

— Rob Manning, executive vice president and chief energy delivery officer
Manning’s portfolio encompasses all aspects of TVA’s power transmission systems, customer relations and economic development.
He previously served as executive vice president of system operations and came to TVA in 2008 from Duke Energy.
Manning earned a bachelor’s in electrical engineering from North Carolina State University and an MBA from Queens College in Charlotte, N.C.

original article

Second solar company offers project to schools

Tennessee Schools Should Have Solar

“Right now, solar energy presents an excellent opportunity in Cumberland County and Tennessee,” said Randy Velker with Crossville-based Simple Energy Works. There are tax credits available for businesses and individuals installing solar generation equipment, businesses are able to accelerate depreciation on the cost of the system and the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Generation Partners program pays power generators 12 cents over retail for every kilowatt hour produced for 10 years.
Unfortunately, the school system is unable to reap the tax benefits available.
“We’ve come up with a system for someone who can capture those benefit to purchase the system and put it on your roof,” Velker told the board. “You can get into solar with someone else buying the equipment and no money out of your pocket.”
Velker proposes a 49.92 kilowatt system at 14 school sites with a 20-year agreement. Funding for purchasing the equipment and installing it would come from a third partner, TerraShares, a company that offers project planning, analyses and innovative funding approaches to attract third-party financing for projects such as this. The company worked with Hawkins County school system to install 11 solar power sites on school property.
John Adkins, with TerraShares, said, “Eighty percent of new commercial installations are funded by third parties. Why? Nobody has the money. This provides an opportunity to bring in people interested in taking on the risk in exchange for earnings.”

entire article

Fox News Bites NewsCorp’s Nose to Spite Solar Power

According a report in Think Progress, Fox news recently slammed SunPower as a “failing” company, but Dow Jones picked that very company to build a huge solar installation at its New Jersey headquarters, which it touted as a one of the “smart solutions for the future of our business.” So, did Fox News just call Dow Jones stupid?

Intra-corporate squabbling is probably the last thing embattled NewsCorp chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch needs right now, what with the phone hacking scandal and all, and this could be just the start of another big headache. Dow Jones is the publisher of The Wall Street Journal, the business community’s paper of record and a comfortable home for conservative-leaning commentary. When a mainstream corporate citizen like Dow Jones says solar is a smart investment, and another media company under the same umbrella insists on the opposite, something’s got to give.

Since the Solyndra investigation failed to reveal any systemic problem, Fox moved along to find the next poster child and landed on SunPower. That bumps Fox right up against the U.S. auto industry. Namely, Ford Motor Company and SunPower announced a major initiative just a couple of months ago, to pair SunPower’s home solar installations with purchases of Ford’s new Focus electric vehicle, which will have its manufacturing home right here in the U.S.

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