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Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 18, 2012

AT&T Bid for Broadband Monopoly in South Carolina Resurfaces

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/att-bid-broadband-monopoly-south-carolina-resurfaces

AT&T, one of the few dominant Internet access providers in South Carolina, is again pushing a bill in the state legislature that will gut the self-determiniation of local communities in the… Continue reading

Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 17, 2012

Some Good News in UTOPIA

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/some-good-news-utopia

As should happen with entities that are accountable to the public, the 2011 audit of the UTOPIA network in Utah is available for the public to read. In short, it appears that UTOPIA has contin… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jan 17, 2012

Should Solar Grid Parity Include Tax Credits?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/should-solar-grid-parity-include-tax-credits/

In recent weeks, I wrote a Solar Grid Parity 101 and published an animated map of the year when major U.S. metro areas will reach solar grid parity.  The most frequent criticism was “you didn’t include tax incentives!” 

Yes, there is a 30% federal tax credit on the table until 2016 (barring Republican control of Congress and the White House) and it makes a substantial difference. Mouse over the following map to see the impact of the federal Investment Tax Credit on solar grid parity in 2016.

 

Solar Grid Parity

 

My one thought: if the ITC expires as scheduled, the 2017 map will have a lot more red than the 2016 one if we measure grid parity with incentives.

But you’ve seen the difference (from 3 states to 21 states with grid parity!), now vote in the comments:

Should the tax credit be included in a calculation of grid parity? Why or why not?

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Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 16, 2012

Santa Clara Prepares to Re-Launch Free Wi-Fi Network

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/santa-clara-prepares-re-launch-free-wi-fi-network

Silicon Valley Power, the muni electric utilty owned by Santa Clara is preparing to launch a citywide Wi-Fi network later this year according to the Santa Clara Weekly. The city took over the … Continue reading

Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 13, 2012

Amazon’s Chattanooga Distribution Center is Expanding

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/amazons-chattanooga-distribution-center-expanding

Prior to Chattanooga’s gigabit announcement, Amazon had no considered that region as a location for the distribution center they would looking to put in the southeastern U.S. But they saw the … Continue reading

Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 13, 2012

Community Broadband Research Position Available at ILSR

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/community-broadband-research-position-available-ilsr

The Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR), a small non-profit based in Minneapolis seeks a full-time employee to conduct public policy research in broadband/telecommunications. The position … Continue reading

Cars at Tesla Dealership
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jan 13, 2012

How to Sell Electric Cars

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/how-sell-electric-cars/

Maggie Koerth-Baker wrote an excellent essay on the value of electric vehicles (a rebuttal to the idea that Americans hate EVs), but this paragraph could stand alone as the “reason to buy an electric car.”

3) Screw you, electric cars are fun to drive. 

Look, I know this is purely subjective. But “not fun,” Johnson? Seriously? Have you gotten a chance to floor the accelerator on a Nissan Leaf on a stretch of empty one-way street? Because I have. And it’s hella fun. Electric motors don’t shift gears the way internal combustion engines do. Which means, when you accelerate, you just keep accelerating, without the slow-down that accompanies each shift up. Which means you’re slammed back in your seat like you’re riding a motherf***ing rocket ship to the moon. Only it’s silent. How is that not awesome? If I buy an electric car, I am going to get sooooo many speeding tickets**. I think that’s pretty much the all-American definition of a fun car.

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Rickreall_Post_Office_1
Article filed under The Public Good, The Public Good News | Written by David Morris | No Comments | Updated on Jan 13, 2012

How Obama Can Guarantee a Second Term

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/how-obama-can-guarantee-a-second-term/

Let me suggest a sure fire way Barack Obama can win a second term. Stand in the doorway of a post office scheduled for closing and declare, “Not on my watch.” He will be standing with tens of millions of Americans who are rising up to defend our must trusted and ubiquitous public institution. Last… Continue reading

Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 12, 2012

Legislation Alert: Washington Considers Community Broadband Bill

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/legislation-alert-washington-considers-community-broadband-bill

Last year we noted that a bill to expand local authority to invest in publicly owned broadband networks would return in 2012. HB 1711 is in Committee and causing a bit of a stir. “A bit of a … Continue reading

Advanced Electric Meter
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 1 Comment | Updated on Jan 12, 2012

How Electricity Pricing Can Boost Distributed Solar – Part 1

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/how-electricity-pricing-can-boost-distributed-solar-part-1-0/

Note: This is a revision of the same post from last week, with an updated time-of-use pricing plan from Los Angeles. What if electricity cost more when the sun was shining? Many utilities are using new electronic “smart meters” to adjust the price of electricity as often as every 15 minutes, to reflect supply and… Continue reading