First Solar Takes Over Moapa Solar Project

First Solar has added another mega-scale project to its pipeline, helping ensure there’s enough to feed its thin-film solar PV manufacturing machine.

via Renewable Energy News –

Vote Now for Your Favorite Project of the Year! Readers’ Choice Voting Closes Tuesday!

via Renewable Energy News –

What is Solar Worth to a Utility?

It’s an issue of national debate, but one unexpected state — Minnesota — is engaging a formal process for determining the methodology for setting the value of solar. As the first multi-utility process, it’s likely to set a precedent nationwide for what the “value of solar” will mean and whether it will aid the continued growth of distributed solar

via Renewable Energy News –

Renewable Energy Mid-Year Report: 10% US Energy Consumption, 14% Net Electrical Generation

According to the most recent issue of the “Monthly Energy Review” by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), with data through June 30, 2013, renewable energy sources (i.e., biofuels, biomass, hydropower, geothermal, solar, and wind) provided 9.81 percent of U.S. energy consumption and 11.82 percent of domestic energy production for the first half of 2013.

via Renewable Energy News –

Virtual Power Plants: A New Model for Renewables Integration

Today’s global energy market is in the midst of a paradigm shift, from a model dominated by large centralized power plants owned by big utilities to a mixed bag of so-called distributed energy generation facilities — smaller residential, commercial and industrial power generation systems — many of which use renewable resources.

via Renewable Energy News –

Movin’ and Shakin': Geothermal Projects Face a Rocky Road

Geothermal energy, one of the “forgotten renewables,” powers 4,419 MW, or just more than 1 percent, of planned capacity in the U.S., surpassing only planned biomass-fueled capacity in the renewables sector. Geothermal heat currently powers just 2,751 MW.

via Renewable Energy News –

Free the Arctic 30, and lock up fossil fuels.

Embassy vigil demanding the release the Arctic 30

On Friday, peaceful activists from the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise woke up in a freezing jail cell in Russia for trying to protect the Arctic and fight global warming. At the same time the UN panel on Climate Change released its latest report on the status of the world’s climate.

Both events can be summed up in one word. Grim.

The UN report contains hundreds of pages of evidence to justify the actions of the brave Arctic 30. They were acting in defense of a fragile Arctic and a warming world.

This study has gone further than its previous incarnations, and illustrates the crisis we’re facing with even more confidence than before: climate change is a huge problem, the fossil fuel industry is responsible, and the window of opportunity to avoid really dangerous consequences is closing rapidly.

For climate activists everywhere, this announcement is bittersweet. Certainly it adds even more weight to the reasons behind the actions of the Arctic 30 and infuses the debate with more urgency. Yet at the same time, despite the indisputable evidence, governments everywhere are failing to act, and now the Russian authorities are proving they will stop at nothing to defend the oil industry as it exploits climate change to drill for more of the oil that caused this crisis in the first place.

Following an illegal boarding and arrest of our ship Arctic Sunrise after a peaceful protest against dangerous oil drilling, the ship was towed to Murmansk. The ‘Arctic 30′ were interviewed and subsequently detained without charge. Greenpeace, along with millions around the world, is calling for their immediate release, and sees the recent climate report as a strong call for more people to stand up against the reckless oil industry.

Russian oil giant Gazprom is trying to silence the activists and anyone who would speak out against Arctic oil drilling. Along with other oil companies like Shell, Gazprom is afraid of international attention on the Arctic oil race. However, the truth is that the world needs more, not less, attention focused on lunacy of the global greed for more Arctic oil.

For the first time, this report quantifies how much CO2 the world can emit if we are to stay within so-called safe limits of two degrees global warming: no more than 1000 gigatons of CO2 can be emitted from today until the end of the century if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change. This requires that global emissions peak before 2020, and decline rapidly thereafter. At current emission levels, we will have emitted that  within 20 to 30 years. And with current growth, the time is even shorter. This is challenging, but not yet impossible.

Companies like Gazprom and Shell are literally banking on climate change. They have business models in place that depend on the world remaining addicted to fossil fuels, and that rely on the notion that governments will continue to protect the oil industry instead of their people. But alternatives exist, and another world is possible.

Certain fossil fuels need to stay in the ground if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change. That is a simple, indisputable fact. Yet in spite of this undeniable truth, greedy oil companies like Gazprom and others are exploring for more oil and gas, even in extremely sensitive areas like the icy Arctic Ocean, which carries an even greater risk of oil spills and accidents.

Drilling in the Arctic Ocean is incredibly dangerous when there is no way to clean up an oil spill in ice. It’s like playing a game of Russian roulette with the sensitive Arctic environment.

The Arctic 30 know this. That is why these brave activists deserve our respect, gratitude and their freedom.

Truls Gulowsen is the head of Greenpeace in Norway. 

via Greenpeace news

One person stands with the Arctic 30 in Moscow

We have been standing in solidarity with our colleagues from the Arctic Sunrise here in Moscow since September 19th. All day, every day for nine days so far. We stand in a one-person picket near the entrance of the Moscow headquarters of Gazprom supporting our friends – the 30 Greenpeace activists arrested during a peaceful protest against the extraction of oil by the Gazprom Arctic platform “Prirazlomnaya” in the Pechora Sea.

A lone activist protests in front of Gazprom HQ.

It has to be a one-person picket because in Russia you don’t need permission from the authorities for one person to protest. In contrast, for a large rally or protest you have to ask for permission in advance from the local authorities, and it is often denied.

We’ve stopped keeping track of the exact times and dates that our protest receives extra attention from Gazprom. Instead, we keep track of the weather and notable events… “It was the day when it rained and rained all day long that the ‘gardener’ came”, for instance. Or “that morning, when Gazprom headquarters decided to have a renovation”, or “the day when the Special Police Force came.”  That was particularly memorable.

September, this year in Moscow, is particularly cold and rainy. So it’s very uncomfortable to stand with poster in hands for a long period. Our activists relieve each other every 1.5-2 hours.

Image..At the very beginning of our picket, the Security service of “Gazprom” called the police every single time an activist replaced another near our protest tent. At the beginning the police claimed they were shown invalid passports from our activists. They tried to make trouble for us, to get us to stop protesting. During these 9 days of protest we have had the chance to teach the police that we will not allow them to infringe on our rights to peaceful protest.

After that, the Gazprom security decided it was their job to try and intimidate us into stopping. They forced our activists out of their spot in front of the Gazprom building by using a sidewalk cleaning machine to push them aside, then even used a mini-bulldozer! They left a parked car running, on the sidewalk just next to our activist, forcing them to inhale terrible exhaust fumes. But the worst weapon employed by Gazprom security was the “drunk  gardener”, defending his grass from the peaceful Greenpeace activists that wanted to stand on it, one at a time. Of course he didn’t care at all about oil production in the Arctic or about our Greenpeace colleagues being detained, the main thing was to scare our activists away. The police got our calls regularly about these problems. The “gardener” was drunk and not interested in listening to the reasons from our activists, only in seeming unpredictable and intimidating. But when the police came he made his way back inside the Gazprom enclosure, watching what the police would do from behind the protection of the fence.

Image..At our solidarity protest we call the police every day, and sometimes more than once a day. And we know that Gazprom is calling the police every day too. Their security officers photograph and film our every step, and we photograph and film theirs. Sometimes they even try to “accompany ” our activists to the metro or a waiting car, when their turn protesting is over. This is obviously done to scare them into never coming back.
We wonder what kind of people are watching us: is this just Gazprom security, the Federal Security Agency (FSB), or someone else?

They desperately want our protest day to be short, they hope that when it’s raining we will cancel our peaceful protest and go away. But now, even they are beginning to understand that we will only stop supporting our friends, the Arctic 30, when they are free.

via Greenpeace news

Verbatim’s Latest Classic A Lamps Provide Brightest Solutions for Home Users

Verbatim’s top-of–the-range 12W Classic A LED has a brightness of 1,100 lumens (equivalent to a 77W incandescent lamp) and is available in B22 and E27 models. With a warm-white colour temperature of 3,000K, luminous efficiency of 91.7 lm/W and a lifetime of 30,000 hours (around 30 years if used for two hours per day), these non-dimmable lamps serve general lighting needs in the home. Consumers can choose from an additional six dimmable Classic A lamps in 4W, 6W, 8W and 10W outputs with either B22 or E27 fittings and a colour temperature of 2,700K and 3000K. A dimmable 14W E27 Classic A lamp capable of producing 1,100lm has also been added for those who require high brightness and flexible dimming control. The design of the near omni-directional Classic A gives out a high light radiation angle of 270°.

Six new spotlights have been introduced. These feature a lifetime of over 35,000 hours and up to 85% energy saving. Most have beam angles of 35 or 36 degrees. There are three dimmable PAR 16 GU10 LED lamps with power ratings of 5W, 6.5W and 7W. Within a 90-degree cone, the lamps deliver 230lm, 270lm and 350lm respectively. Two 6.5W MR16 GU5.3 lamps provide 350lm and 370lm of brightness within a 90-degree cone. A 6.5W MR16 with GU10 fitting offers 400lm to complete the new spotlight range.

Used mainly in small fixtures such as cabinets, vanity mirrors and display furniture, three extra bi-pin lamps have been introduced to provide high illumination at very low power. Verbatim’s 1W bi-pin with G4 Capsule fitting produces 80lm brightness (equivalent to 10W) and has an outstanding energy efficiency of A++, offering 90% energy saving. This is complemented by a 1.5W bi-pin with G4 Round fitting that delivers 85lm brightness and a lifetime of 40,000 hours. An MR11 LED with GU4 fitting is brighter at 90lm and offers a luminous intensity of 200cd.

“As the demand for direct energy-efficient retrofit LED lamps to replace old incandescent bulbs and halogen lamps continues to grow, so does the choice of lighting Verbatim offers. Through months of careful product development and market research, Verbatim has created an even broader LED range that offers exceptional performance, reliability and value to customers seeking to improve their home lighting,” comments Jeanine Chrobak, Business Development Manager LED EUMEA, Verbatim.

About Verbatim:
Verbatim is a leading global company in data storage and LED lighting with a broad product portfolio spanning consumer and professional applications. Verbatim has been shaping the development of data storage devices since 1969 and is the world’s No 1 supplier of optical media (Blu-ray, DVD and CD). The company also markets flash memory, external hard drive storage solutions and a wide range of computer accessories.
In addition, the company is an innovator in fast-growing LED and OLED lighting, developing products that offer low power consumption, long life and a better lighting experience. It is also an emerging supplier of water filtration systems; its Cleansui brand is Japan’s favourite water filter.
Verbatim is a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Kagaku Media owned by Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, one of the world’s largest chemical companies, which invests heavily in R&D across many diverse sectors. The company’s operating principles are founded on helping people to live in a healthy, comfortable and sustainable way. Verbatim’s regional organisations are EMEA, APAC and Americas, with offices in most countries in the world. The company’s European headquarters are based in the UK. For further information, visit

via LED-professional