Rooftop solar’s resale value exceeds its cost

photo courtesy of SEIA
photo courtesy of SEIA

For the first six months of 2015, solar power accounted for 40% of all new electric generating capacity brought on-line in the U.S. according to a recent report by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). That makes economic sense, especially for U.S. rooftop solar. Photovoltaic (PV) system costs have fallen and buyers are willing to pay more for homes that have PV systems than they will pay for similar homes without them. Homeowners can now install solar panels and then immediately recover their PV investment, and more, if they sell their house. Continue reading Rooftop solar’s resale value exceeds its cost

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Vermont electricity is 100% renewable & Green Power exceeds 60% in 6 U.S. states

Vermont hydropower dam - photo courtesy of Green Mountain Power
Vermont hydropower dam – photo courtesy of Green Mountain Power

Vermont’s electricity generation became 100% from green power sources in late 2014, when the state’s only nuclear power plant permanently closed. Additionally, according to USEIA data five other states are encouragingly not far behind. As of June 2015, renewable sources power 60% or more of those states’ electricity production. Continue reading Vermont electricity is 100% renewable & Green Power exceeds 60% in 6 U.S. states

Plastic Microbeads Banned: 9 states+4 multinationals

photo courtesy of 5gyres
photo courtesy of 5gyres

Public pressure can make a difference.  California is the latest state to ban plastic microbeads, and its law is probably the nation’s toughest. Environmentalists hope the legislation will become the model for a future U.S. statute. But even before California’s action, eight other states had adopted microbead bans that will take effect before California’s law. Additionally four multinational corporations, because of consumer duress, had committed to phasing out microbeads even sooner. Continue reading Plastic Microbeads Banned: 9 states+4 multinationals

NYC bike share system doubling to 12,000 bikes

map courtesy of CitiBike
map courtesy of CitiBike

CitiBike, New York City’s bike share system, has opened over 90 new stations so far this year and plans to double its bikes, and more than double its stations, by the end of 2017. On the other U.S. coast, San Francisco’s Bay Area Bike Share is growing from 700 to 7,000 bicycles. Continue reading NYC bike share system doubling to 12,000 bikes

First U.S. 100% EV car-share service shifts into gear

photo courtesy of wibc.com
photo courtesy of wibc.com

You don’t typically think of Indianapolis, Indiana, USA as being in the same class as Paris and London. Nevertheless, in at least one respect, it is. Maybe Indy’s automobile heritage plays a role. The city is home to the Indianapolis 500, one of the world’s oldest and most well-know gasoline-powered car races. And now Indy is becoming a world leader in electric vehicle (EV) use. First, it created one of the world’s largest EV municipal car fleets. Now it just opened the first EV car-share system in the U.S. Continue reading First U.S. 100% EV car-share service shifts into gear