Recent Updates

The following items have been recently added or updated:

Some Almost Forgotten Solar History

Berkeley Lab’s “Utility-Scale Solar, 2021 Edition”

Electrification of transportation sector = More Renewable Energy Needed

Tucson Electric Power (TEP) to provide 70% of its energy from solar and wind by 2035

A link to a good article on What You Need to Know to make Sure Your Solar Rooftop is Properly Valued at Time of Sale: Is Solar Sexy When You Sell Your Home?

APS- Residential Battery Pilot Program

See the section "Some things to pay attention to in Arizona", click on the various tabs.

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Events

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Some things to pay attention to in Arizona (Select Tab)

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Update April 27, 2022-- Today Electric companies in Arizona won't have to worry about competing for customers after Gov. Doug Ducey signed the bill described below that repeals laws allowing for Competition.  See the AZ Central article.


The current 2022 session of the Arizona Legislature has passed House Bill 2101 which would repeal most of the state’s electricity retail competition rules.  No surprise that this bill and Senate Bill 1631 are being supported by all the major Arizona electric utilities (APS, SRP, and TEP). 

In 1998 Arizona enacted a law that allowed for a phasing in of a competitive electric energy market. For various reasons this competitive market did not develop. Recently, in reaction to Texas-based Green Mountain Energy's August 2021 application to the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) to begin selling what they claim are 100% renewable energy plans to customers in Arizona Public Service (APS) and Tucson Electric Power's (TEP) service areas, the utilities seek to prevent that from being able to go forward. The result is HB2101/SB1631.

Specifically removed from Arizona law is the concept "It is the public policy of this state that a competitive market shall exist in the sale of electric generation service. ".

The Arizona Republic had a good opinion article on this.

The Arizona Solar Energy Industries Association (AriSEIA), a nonprofit trade association representing the solar and storage industry in Arizona, opposes HB2101.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued a landmark decision regarding rooftop solar. Ellis v. Salt River Project (SRP) was decided on Monday, January 31, 2022. The case is a class action lawsuit against SRP for its treatment of rooftop solar customers. In 2014, SRP announced its E-27 rate plan, which increased costs for rooftop solar customers by 65% and resulted in a decrease of rooftop solar applications by 50-96%.

Should HB 2101 become law, the statutes that the 9th Circuit relied on to rule in favor of rooftop solar customers would be eradicated and the outcome of the case would very likely be different.

The Rose Law Group, active in renewable energy, has an interesting article on how the utilities circulated a misleading “fact sheet” to legislators:

Exposed: Monopolies SRP, APS, TEP misleading legislators

 

 

 Interesting Arizona Solar Stories

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Interesting Technology Updates -Click on a title below

  • - A radical idea to get a high-renewable electric grid

    This is an interesting approach to optaining very high penetration of renewables such as photovoltaics and wind.  At present most large installations operate under Power Purchase Agreements (PPA) wherein the economics are based on a sell all output at predetermined prices. This contrasts with standalone systems wherein the system size Read More
  • - Breakthrough Batteries Powering the Era of Clean Electrification

    - Breakthrough Batteries Powering the Era of Clean Electrification Battery Storage Costs Drop Dramatically, Making Way to a New Era. A recent Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) report continues to confirm that clean electrification through batteries is advancing at impressive rates. Very interesting report: Breakthrough Batteries- Powering the Era of Clean Electrification Read More
  • - Changes impacting photovoltaic (PV) installations in the 2020 National Electrical Code (NEC)

    - Changes impacting photovoltaic (PV) installations in the 2020 National Electrical Code (NEC) A look at some of the more significant changes under consideration for the 2020 National Electrical Code (NEC) that will affect future distributed generation systems (solar electric wind, etc.). Article 690, Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Systems and Article 705, being renamed Interconnected Electric Power Production Sources, are specific to distributed generation. Read More
  • - Interesting Technology

    An assortment of links to interesting information   Semiconductor Nanowires Could Double the Efficiency of Silicon Solar Cells A p/n semiconductor junction is not the only way of converting sunshine into useful electrical energy.  Light consists of a flow of photons of various energy levels (colors).  See this article-Solar Cells.  Nanowires Read More
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General News

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Interesting Videos

Adopting clean energy and electric vehicles will help our pocketbooks and national security

Fossil fuels are an inherently destabilizing force, as events in Ukraine remind us.

Recently, the Biden administration banned American purchases of Russian oil, methane gas and coal to punish the country for its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. 

Our reliance on fossil fuels is increasingly a threat to our national and economic security. It’s why we must accelerate the transition to stable, locally produced renewable energy. 

 

 

The national security implications of relying on dictators for our energy are obvious. We immediately feel the economic pain when their actions roil the globe, such as at the gas pump.

Increased demand had already pushed gasoline prices up, just as the economy roared out of the pandemic. The uncertainty created by the invasion of Ukraine sent them further soaring past $4 a gallon in the United States. 

There is an alternative to stem our legacy with oil and gas: The U.S. must make a meaningful transition to electric vehicles and clean energy. Driving an EV is the equivalent of driving on $1 per gallon gasoline, in addition to eliminating those regular oil changes. All American families will love saving on fuel and maintenance.

Arizona has shown that embracing the EV industry can do more than clean the air and save consumers money — It can invigorate an economy. The Grand Canyon State is home to multiple EV manufacturers, billions in capital investment and thousands of jobs in the growing industry. And we are just at the beginning of EV development.

 

Achieving a 90% clean electricity grid and electrifying all new cars and trucks by 2035 would save the U.S. nearly $3 trillion and support 2 million jobs.

Europe has been grappling with high energy prices and Russian pressure for longer than we have. As the world’s second largest producer of gas and third biggest oil producer, Russia provides most of Europe’s energy needs. 

Vladimir Putin was testing how much control that gave him long before his tanks rolled into Ukraine. He cut gas flows to the European Union by 25% in the fourth quarter of 2021 compared to a year earlier. Last month, he escalated his energy war by cutting off gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria.

Over the course of the year, wholesale gas prices surged by more than 400% in Europe. And while we struggle with gasoline prices approaching $5 a gallon, the British are paying nearly twice as much

So, it’s no wonder that, on the same day Biden announced his Russian fossil fuel ban, the European Union unveiled a new energy roadmap designed to cut reliance on Russian gas by two-thirds in one year and ending it all together well before 2030. The plan calls for a massive ramping up of renewable energy, biogas and hydrogen. 

This is exactly what the United States needs to do. Rather than advocating for more oil production – already near record levels – with its attendant climate damage, this nation needs to speed the transition to clean energy. Renewable energy is increasingly competitive and often cheaper than gas

Clean energy is also stable in price with no volatile cost shifts suffered by fossil fuels, which can change in an instant based on the latest geopolitics. 

In Arizona, we have abundant sunshine. Strong, steady winds turn turbines across the northern portion of the state. We have much to gain by embracing renewable energy to power our cars, homes and businesses. 

And so does the country. According to one estimate, achieving a 90% clean electricity grid and electrifying all new cars and trucks by 2035 would save the U.S. nearly $3 trillion and support 2 million jobs, while reducing  air pollution. 

And it would serve our national security interests. 

Ukraine is just the latest example of how dependence on destabilizing fossil fuels can hold nations hostage. It’s well past time to break those chains, embrace clean energy, and strengthen our national security interests.

 

 

Arizona Mirror is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Arizona Mirror maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Jim Small for questions: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Follow Arizona Mirror on Facebook and Twitter.

Solar energy advocates increase representation on Salt River Project board

Three of the four candidates of a "Clean Energy" team won election to the SRP board in the recent (April 5, 2022) election.  This was a low budget effort that paid off for the candidates.  The SRP organization is complex, there is an overview on the SRP website.

Unofficial results are available for download as documents on the Candidates and unofficial election results from the April 5, 2022 election webpage. as a .pdf.

Ryan Randazzo, Business Reporter at the Arizona Republic has a good article on this.

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  • Welcome to the Arizona Solar Center

     This is your source for solar and renewable energy information in Arizona. Explore various technologies, including photovoltaics, solar water heating, solar architecture, solar cooking and wind power. Keep up to date on the latest industry news. Follow relevant lectures, expositions and tours. Whether you are a homeowner looking to become more energy efficient, a student learning the science behind the technologies or an industry professional, you will find valuable information here.
  • About The Arizona Solar Center

    About The Arizona Solar Center Arizona Solar Center Mission- The mission of the Arizona Solar Center is to enhance the utilization of renewable energy, educate Arizona's residents on solar technology developments, support commerce and industry in the development of solar and other sustainable technologies and coordinate these efforts throughout the state of Arizona. About the Arizona Solar Center- The Arizona Solar Center (AzSC) provides a broad-based understanding of solar energy, especially as it pertains to Arizona. Registered Read More
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