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Solar Panels – Ask About End-of-Life Recycling

Solar panels have decades of life in them, so there is no immediate deluge of panels to recycle. 2050 is the year I have seen cited as when we will see lots of used panels to be managed. Even then, it is hard to say how technology could extend…

Solar and Agriculture: A Match Made in Heaven?

“Explore all the options and be diverse,” says Colorado State University research ecologist Alan Knapp about agriculture and energy. I interviewed Knapp about a project he co-leads: Sustainably Co-locating Agricultural and Photovoltaic Electricity…

Solar and Agriculture - Not an “Either/Or” Decision

These are comments you might hear someone say about electricity: No more solar fields. Land is for agriculture. All solar and wind is best, no nuclear. Natural gas is horrible and should be outlawed. A researcher at Colorado…

Energy Jobs Will Grow

The top two fastest-growing jobs in the next 10 years that do not require a college degree are in energy. That is what a Bureau of Labor Statistics report says. Those jobs are in new energy technologies – wind energy technicians and solar…

Changing Our Energy System Requires Some Give

Mention solar energy even a few years ago and angels sang, the sky was deep blue, and all was right with the world. Not so much anymore. That burnish has worn off in some places. NIMBYism – Not In My Backyard – has hit solar development.…

The Soft Side of Solar

The hard costs of solar have gone down and soft costs have been a source of concern. Hardware costs include all the materials needed to construct the system: module, inverter, racking, and electrical wiring. Soft costs include the…

Something To Think About - High School Solar

Combine solar energy and a high school, and in at least one city, there is a productive partnership. It is a positive story worth sharing. Here’s the story: “In 2017, Dr. Michael Hester became the superintendent of the Batesville School…

Solar Energy: Utility, Community, Individual

Not all solar energy systems are alike. The public may read about three different sizes and shapes of systems. Here is a look in broad terms. Utility scale solar: These are large systems. A utility owns the solar and sells the power to…

Prepare Now for Solar Panel Recycling

What do solar panels have to do with chickens and eggs? When it comes to recycling photo voltaic panels, more than it may seem. Solar power to make electricity is increasing in the U.S., most in utility-scale (large) projects for the…

Natural Gas and Renewables Are Growing Factors In Our Electricity

And the winners are – natural gas and renewable energy. That is the message from the US Energy Information Agency* in its new Annual Energy Outlook 2019. The report was released January 24. Natural gas and renewables are the two fastest…