At least $25.7B in new US clean-energy factories are in the works. Most of these projects and jobs are in traditionally conservative states.

At least $25.7 billion in new U.S. clean-energy factories are in the works, thanks in part to the generous subsidies in President Joe Biden’s landmark climate law. Most of these projects — and the jobs that come with them — are in traditionally conservative states.

In Dalton, Georgia, green energy hasn’t been a priority. Its congressional representative, Marjorie Taylor Greene, has said that “Earth warming and carbon is actually healthy for us.”

But a new solar-panel factory is changing minds in the city of 34,000. Indeed, the presence of new jobs is transforming solar power into a tangible community benefit.

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Source: The Seattle Times

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LRE has completed construction of its 100MW Rabbitbrush Solar Facility in Kern County with a 20MW, 50MWh battery energy storage system.

Leeward Renewable Energy (LRE) has completed construction and commenced operations of its 100-MW Rabbitbrush Solar Facility located in Kern County, California. The facility also includes a 20-MW, 50-MWh battery energy storage system.

The energy generated by the project will serve two not-for-profit, community-owned electricity providers, Central Coast Community Energy (CCCE) and Silicon Valley Clean Energy (SVCE), through two 15-year power purchase agreements (PPAs). LRE, CCCE and SVCE hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Rabbitbrush Solar Facility earlier today to celebrate the start of operations at the facility.

“LRE is proud to partner with CCCE and SVCE on a monumental project that will provide significant economic and environmental benefits,” said Jason Allen, CEO of LRE’s. “Bringing this project online is another example of how we manage our projects in alignment with our core values of protecting and respecting the environment in the communities where we operate. Our focus is on providing continuous value to local communities while building and maintaining strong, long-term relationships.”

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Source: Solar Power World

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Avantus partnered with wildlife services to protect desert lands by retiring grazing rights on more than 215,000 acres.

Avantus, formerly 8minute Energy, partnered with wildlife services to protect desert lands by retiring grazing rights on more than 215,000 acres.

The company is partnering with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW), and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) for the Onyx Conservation project. Onyx will conserve and permanently dedicate the area in Kern County to wildlife forage.

As one of the largest mitigation projects in the nation, Onyx will permanently protect a swath of Mojave Desert seven times larger than San Francisco. This will protect and enhance desert wildlife and plants, including the western Joshua Tree.

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Source: PV Magazine

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First Solar has selected Alabama as the site for its fourth U.S. panel factory. The climate bill was a key catalyst for the new facility.

First Solar said Wednesday that it has selected Alabama as the site for its fourth U.S. solar panel manufacturing facility, after the Inflation Reduction Act and its incentives for domestic manufacturing encouraged companies to onshore production.

First Solar will spend around $1.1 billion on the facility in North Alabama’s Lawrence County. The company announced plans for a new facility in August, but hadn’t yet disclosed the location. First Solar CEO Mark Widmar previously told CNBC that the Inflation Reduction Act was the key catalyst that led First Solar to choose the U.S. for its latest factory.

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Source: CNBC

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The 1,900-acre installation would create 155 megawatts of energy each year in addition to battery storage capacity of another 155 MW.

Bay-area based company Primergy Solar has submitted its application to the La Plata County Planning Department for a massive solar project south of Hesperus.

Neighbors to the proposed site in southwest La Plata County, who felt the initial announcement of the project lacked clarity, have awaited the application with bated breath.

The application – a collection of documents over 1,000 pages in length – outlines the specific proposal for the 1,900-acre project, which, if constructed, is projected to create 155 megawatts of solar energy each year in addition to a battery storage capacity of another 155 MW.

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Source: The Durango Herald

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California regulators on Thursday proposed changes to the state's residential solar market designed to encourage more at-home battery systems

California regulators on Thursday proposed changes to the state’s residential solar market designed to encourage more at-home battery systems that can help the electrical grid rely less on fossil fuels in the evenings, especially during heat waves.

It’s the California Public Utilities Commission’s second attempt at updating the state’s incentive program for home solar systems. Last December, the commission proposed new charges for solar customers and lessened the subsidies for installing rooftop panels, which utilities wanted but solar companies warned would cripple the booming industry and hinder the state’s move to clean energy.

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Source: Fox News

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Large car parks in France will be covered by solar panels under new legislation approved as part of Pres. Macron’s renewable energy drive.

All large car parks in France will be covered by solar panels under new legislation approved as part of president Emmanuel Macron’s renewable energy drive.

Legislation approved by the French Senate this week requires existing and new car parks with space for at least 80 vehicles to be covered by solar panels.

The owners of car parks with between 80 and 400 spaces have five years to comply with the measures, while operators of those with more than 400 will have just three years. At least half of the area of the larger sites must be covered by solar panels.

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Source: The Guardian

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The CEC issued a $31M grant to build a 60MWh long-duration energy storage system to provide backup power to the Viejas Tribe.

More than 4 GW of battery storage has been installed in the California Independent System Operator footprint, and the state projects that it would need another 48 GW of battery storage and 4 GW of long-duration storage by 2045. The project is the first to be awarded under the state’s $140 million long-duration energy storage program.

The 60 MWh system is “one of the first of its kind in the country,” according to the CEC, and will be developed by Indian Energy, a Native American-owned microgrid developer. In addition to providing the Viejas tribe with renewable backup power during outages, it will allow the tribe to reduce electricity use from the grid when the state needs more resources.

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Source: Utility Dive

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The Latin American country has far exceeded its goal to reach 20% of energy production from renewable sources by 2025

In the middle of the Atacama Desert, 10,600 mirrors face skyward. Each one measures 140 square meters and weighs about three tons. Their function is to follow the sun’s trajectory, reflecting and directing the radiation towards the receiver and converting it into energy. The Concentrated Solar Power plant occupies 1,000 hectares and is located in northern Chile’s Cerro Dominador. This area has the highest level of solar incidence in the world and is the site of Latin America’s first solar thermal plant. Most of the country’s clean energy is generated there and, because of the plant, Chile achieved one of its most ambitious environmental targets last year, four years ahead of schedule.

The country set itself the goal of producing 20% of its energy from non-conventional renewable energy (NCRE) by 2025. This year, the percentage has already reached 31.1%, according to the Chilean Association of Renewable Energies and Storage (Acera). This comes primarily from photovoltaic energy, which represents 15% of the country’s renewable energy. Cerro Dominador’s proximity to Chile’s large mining areas has also made it easier for that industry to incorporate more solar energy. In 2019, mining’s use of renewable energies did not exceed 3.6%, but it rose to 10.5% in 2020. In 2021, solar energy consumption in the mining sector reached the milestone of 36.2%. That rate is projected to climb to 50% by the end of this fiscal year.

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Source: El Pais

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The new proposal offers hundreds of millions of dollars of new support for low-income customers, while excluding a monthly tax for solar homes to connect to the grid.

California regulators on Thursday revised their proposal for rooftop solar systems credits, a contentious matter as the state tries to expand renewable energy and respond to critics who want more equitable distribution of incentives.

The new proposal offers hundreds of millions of dollars of new support for low-income customers, while excluding a monthly tax for solar homes to connect to the grid, a move critics say effectively favors richer Californians as they own the lion’s share of the clean energy system.

In a 250-page proposed decision, regulators outlined reforms to the so-called “net energy metering”, a state policy that issues credits to solar energy customers for generating excess electricity and feeding it back to the grid.

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Source: Reuters

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