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SolarWorksInMN1 250
Featured Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 7 Comments | Updated on Mar 13, 2014

Could Minnesota’s “Value of Solar” Make Everyone a Winner?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/minnesotas-value-solar-winner/

On Wednesday, Minnesota became the first state to allow utilities a new method of contracting with distributed solar producers, called the market-based “value of solar.” If adopted by utilities, it will fundamentally change the relationship between solar-producing customers and their electric utility. Following Minnesota’s Value of Solar Process? Here are a few resources: Part 1… Continue reading

solar pv close up
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Feb 28, 2014

Five Reasons Solar’s Win Over Gas in Minnesota is Just the Beginning

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/solars-win-gas-minnesota-beginning/

Solar advocates were popping corks when a New Year’s Eve ruling by an administrative law judge in Minnesota said that distributed solar arrays were a more cost-effective resource than natural gas to meet Xcel Energy’s peak power needs. The energy media were aflutter for weeks, but many missed the bigger significance. If solar trumps gas… Continue reading

jff and thom hartmann
Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Feb 24, 2014

John Farrell Talks Energy Decentralization on Thom Hartmann’s Big Picture

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/john-farrell-talks-energy-decentralization-thom-hartmanns-big-picture/

What is energy decentralization, who’s doing it, and why does it matter? John Farrell, Director of Democratic Energy, answers these questions in an interview segment with Thom Hartmann on his Big Picture program on February 18, 2014. Skip to 30:06 to see John’s interview.   Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Feb 20, 2014

Millions of People Investing in Solar – Episode 16 of Local Energy Rules

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/millions-people-investing-solar-episode-16-local-energy-rules/

For years, the only effective way to go solar was to have tens of thousands of dollars and a sunny roof.  Investing in solar was nearly impossible.  But a couple years ago, a new notion called crowdfunding got its start, and California-Based Mosaic was on the forefront.  Its crowdfunding program allows people to pool their… Continue reading

Credit: Roadsidepictures
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 2 Comments | Updated on Jan 30, 2014

Natural Gas isn’t a Bridge Fuel, it’s a Gateway Drug

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/natural-gas-bridge-fuel-gateway-drug/

In his State of the Union, President Obama added to the conventional wisdom that supplanting coal with natural gas will act as a bridge toward a climate solution. Unfortunately, gas is more of a gateway drug than a bridge to a clean energy future. 1) It’s still a major greenhouse gas.  Sure, natural gas is… Continue reading

northfield climate summit 2014-01 web
Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jan 27, 2014

Local Climate Solutions

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/local-climate-solutions/

What can an individual city or town do to fight climate change? A lot! View these slides from a presentation by ILSR’s Director of Democratic Energy John Farrell to the Northfield Climate Summit on January 18, 2014, to see what one small Minnesota town has done, what other steps it can take as part of… Continue reading

population at grid parity 10 years
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jan 21, 2014

Rooftop Revolution – Appendix

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/rooftop-revolution-appendix/

This wraps up the serialized edition of our residential Rooftop Revolution report.  Read the whole report in short segments below, or download the report and other resources. Part 1 – The Coming Solar Electricity Transformation Part 2 – Solar Costs and Grid Prices On a Collision Course Part 3 – The Solar Opportunity Part 4… Continue reading

Santa Fe
Featured Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jan 16, 2014

A David and Goliath Fight to Tap World Class Solar – Episode 14 of Local Energy Rules

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/david-goliath-fight-tap-world-class-solar-episode-14-local-energy-rules/

“It’s the most inspirational work that I’m doing…this is an inspirational and aspirational effort…at the heart of it is love of place and energy democracy.” Citizens of Santa Fe, NM, are exploring the economic and environmental benefits of more local and locally-controlled energy production.  Is their city ready to take the lead? Find out in… Continue reading

top-5
Featured Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jan 2, 2014

Democratic Energy’s Top 5 of 2013

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/democratic-energys-top-5-2013/

Rooftop Revolution A combination resource of our two reports on residential and commercial solar grid parity, including a slideshow, infographic, and an amazing interactive map (#5 on this list by itself).       Germany Has More Solar Power Because Everyone Wins It got press because someone at Fox News thought Germany was sunnier than… Continue reading

Federal Subsidies
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Wade | No Comments | Updated on Dec 26, 2013

Planning for Phasing Out Incentives

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/planning-phasing-incentives/

Over the next decade, solar electricity will let consumers get cheaper energy from their rooftop than from their utility. Among the upheaval in the electricity system, the coming of solar “grid parity” means re-thinking incentives for solar energy. The success of solar is remarkable, no less because the amount of federal subsidy in absolute terms… Continue reading