Renewable energy growth remains strong in the US. Last week a number of companies, led by Apple’s investment, came together to support wind and solar projects to support their operations. At the same time, New York’s Green Bank announced that its supported nearly $2 billion in clean energy projects.
A group of companies, including Apple, Akamai, Etsy, and Swiss Re are investing in 290 megawatts of new renewable energy projects in the PJM Interconnection’s service region. Apple led the investments, which will allow the companies to purchase clean energy from a 165 megawatt solar farm near Fredericksburg, VA and a 125 megawatt wind farm near Chicago that will be built. The companies will use the renewable energy to reduce their energy costs and green their operations.
In New York the state’s Green Bank continues invest in renewable energy projects and now has invested $522.3 million in projects. That’s spurred $1.7 billion in investments in the state. In the most recent quarter it invested $64.9 million in renewable energy projects including up to 85 megawatts of community solar projects in the state. The bank also invested in major rooftop solar companies including Sunrun and Vivint Solar.
Last week SunPower and the National Parks Conservation Association announced a new partnership under which SunPower will donate $500 to NCPA for each new rooftop solar system it installs for NCPA members and supporters. It also will offer NCPA members and supporters a $500 discount for installing a SunPower roof. SunPower also is making a donation of at least $10,000 to NCPA. The donations will support NCPA’s mission to protect and preserve the national parks.
Also demonstrating the versatility of solar power in unique uses was Airbus. The company announced last week that its new Zephyr S, an unmanned aerial vehicle, stayed aloft for nearly 26 days powered only by the sun and its onboard energy storage. Airbus said the UAV can provide important functions similar to a satellite. For instance, it could provide continual monitoring of a region to study emissions and environmental modeling in an area. It also could provide WiFi connectivity for a region without access to the Internet.Tweet