renewable energy course Articles

  • Powering Renewable Programs: The Utility Perspective

    When considering how to build out a renewable energy portfolio, there are a lot of factors and many points of view to consider. For purposes of this narrative, we will take the point of view of the electric utility itself. Your electricity providers are quite familiar with the concept of a “smart grid.” According to the Department of Energy (DOE), a smart grid “generally refers ...


    By Smart Grid Observer

  • As renewable electricity is added to the grid, are power markets misfiring?

    When increasing megawatt-hours of variable solar and wind energy began coursing through the grid, the initial concern was an operational one—could grid reliability be maintained. But it turns out those megawatt-hours are creating market challenges, as well. What needs to be done to right the markets? Travis Kavulla, vice chairman of the Montana Public Service Commission, and Albert Cheung, ...

  • Oceans of Energy

    Technologies that harness the energy of moving water or temperature differentials in the oceans promise to deliver abundant carbon-free electricity. Long before humans got hooked on fossil fuels, we learned how to harness the power of water to do work. Rivers ran mills that ground flour, sawed logs or spun looms that transformed fibers into textiles. Later generations realized that moving water ...


    By Ensia

  • Study: 100% Renewable Electricity System is the Cheapest Option for South America

    Transitioning to a fully renewable electricity system is possible for South America by 2030. A study by Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT) and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd. also shows that a 100 percent renewable system (100% RE) is the cheapest electricity production option and can be achieved with very little energy storage. "South America has a unique renewable energy ...


    By Smart Grid Observer

  • What will it take to integrate renewables into the power grid? Ask a bicyclist.

    When it comes to fitting into the current system, bike commuters and electrons have a lot in common. There’s nothing quite like biking down clogged city streets, weaving in and out of traffic. For short distances, it’s faster than driving. It’s liberating. It’s fun. It also makes it painfully clear that most roads ...


    By Ensia

  • Canada’s Other Energy Boom – Energy infrastructure is on the move.

    When it comes to energy infrastructure, Canada is on the move. Of course, that may seem like nothing new, given Canada’s lengthy energy history, particularly in the oil and gas industries. In this latest chapter, however, electricity is playing a major role. A confluence of factors have helped spur the need for more generation, which in turn is driving still another form of energy ...


    By GLOBE SERIES

  • Photovoltaics Energy Technologies

    Technology Overview    Photovoltaic (or PV) cells are devices that use semiconductor materials—similar to those used in computer chips—to convert sunlight directly into electricity. The electric current can either be used immediately, or it may be stored, as in a battery, for later use. A typical PV or solar cell might be a square that measures about 4 ...

  • Biomass energy outlook

    Over the last three or four weeks, my newsletter, Burning Bio News, has been oddly extreme. Timothy Searchinger, Princeton University, is churning out more antibiofuel hearsay. Dennis Avery, Hudson Institute, was in the news again putting a counter-spin on climate change. The U.S.EPA released its proposed rule for regulation of Greenhouse Gases (GHG) that includes industrial facilities that emit ...


    By BioCycle Magazine

  • Export opportunity for US energy efficiency?

    For a long time the energy efficiency industry operated largely under the two-guys-and-a-truck-model: local businesses made up of small contractors. Then the ‘super’ energy efficiency service companies (ESCOs) emerged, big operations taking on big contracts often for government, schools or hospitals, like the $35 million deal that Pepco Energy Services signed with the Prince ...

  • 5 Big Energy Stories of 2013

    The U.S. is awash in oil and natural gas. China’s air pollution is so bad some cities were nearly shut down. A massive typhoon wreaked havoc in the Philippines. These are some of the top stories of the past 12 months. Amid these developments, however, there are signs that some businesses, consumers, and governments are moving toward a growing understanding of the risks of climate change. ...

  • Ellen Williams: The future of energy innovation

    As director of the U.S. Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy, Ellen Williams plays a pivotal role in cultivating and guiding energy technology discovery and development in the United States. Ensia recently invited Williams to share her views on what we should watch for in the wide world of energy innovation in the months and years to come. What in your ...


    By Ensia

  • Top 5 Climate and Energy Stories for 2014

    The U.S. energy picture has shifted dramatically in recent years. The country is currently enjoying booming domestic energy production from multiple sources. And yet, signs of uncertainty abound, especially with mounting climate risks and some energy sectors thriving more than others. We will be watching President Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday to hear ...

  • What Makes Biomass a Sustainable Energy Source?

    “Sustainability” is a major buzzword in the energy sector. In the face of climate change, national governments and global organizations like the United Nations continue to encourage the use of sustainable energy sources. In this blog, we’ll examine what makes biomass sustainable, specifically plant-derived biomass like wood pellets. Sustainable Resources: Wood ...


    By Uzelac Industries, Inc

  • Three bridges to a world energy future – nuclear, coal and oil

    'Bridge to the future' is a phrase that is often used in discussing the energy and power needs decades ahead. Some advocates suggest that renewables such as solar and wind are that bridge to a time when the planet will use less energy overall and with fewer environmental consequences. Others have proposed conservation, either voluntary or imposed by governments. Based on present knowledge, it is ...


    By Inderscience Publishers

  • Implementation of European energy saving initiatives in Greece and national perspectives

    Energy has been throughout history a necessary lever for development and evolution. Utilisation of various energy sources contributed in technological development and made the industrial revolution an actual reality. This process has had its price though, since the irrational use of natural resources and finite energy reserves by sole criteria the convenience in production and the maximisation of ...


    By LDK Consultants

  • What stops banks from lending to energy efficiency projects?

    Four years after the US credit market crashed, energy efficiency projects continue to struggle to secure financing. What’s the problem? A slow economy, of course. But when it comes to energy efficiency – and on-site renewable energy – the problem runs deeper. It’s not lack of interest in green energy. To the contrary, says Angela Ferrante, director of alternative energy ...

  • New coal report underscores the urgent need for global clean energy development

    The latest International Energy Agency’s (IEA) Medium-Term Coal Market Report 2012 re-confirms the dangerous path the world is on–a path of increasing dependence on coal, which carries serious environmental risks for people and the planet. According to ...

  • Is nuclear power our energy future — or a dinosaur in a death spiral?

    Identical data yield drastically different conclusions about the role nuclear will play in meeting climate goals. Nuclear power is dead. Long live nuclear power. Nuclear power is the only way forward. Nuclear power is a red herring. Nuclear power is too dangerous. Nuclear power is the safest power source around. Nuclear is nothing. Nuclear is everything. It is now generally agreed ...


    By Ensia

  • Proof: For superior energy efficiency - Water Beats VRF - Case Study

    ASHRAE’s Apples to Apples Comparison Proves Hydronics Delivers Superior Energy Efficiency over VRF For years Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) manufacturers have been touting their systems’ superior energy efficiency over hydronics without providing the supporting data. Then ASHRAE decided to showcase both systems in its Atlanta headquarters and meter their performance. ...


    By Evapco Inc.

  • How can we ensure the race for clean energy doesn’t leave the world’s poorest citizens behind?

    As in other places around the world, Mexico’s wind boom runs the risk of bypassing the poor, which is why we need new global standards. Wind power is booming in Mexico. With more than 3,200 megawatts in operation, the country is on par with Japan. By 2018 it expects to have ...


    By Ensia

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