February 13, 2014 |
Much if not all of the electric power once provided by the San Onofre nuclear power plant could be replaced with energy from non-fossil-fuel sources, says a proposed decision pending at the California Public Utilities Commission. The procurement plan written by an administrative law judge is expected to be debated and possibly voted upon next month by the five-member commission. Two principal partners in the shuttered plant, Southern California Edison Co. and San Diego Gas & Electric Co., would be required to procure at least 600 megawatts of power from so-called preferred resources, which include wind and solar power, energy efficiency programs, electricity storage systems and locally generation from roof-top panels.
January 17, 2014
Re “Solar power's outlook not as sunny,” Jan. 12 The article shows that the desert may not be the best place after all to generate solar power. As The Times points out, the move is away from large, industrial-scale desert plants and toward urban-based, mid-sized ones and rooftop solar: so-called distributed generation. Urban solar built over parking lots and on rooftops eliminates the environmental damage of desert solar - along with the need for environment impact statements, new transmission lines to bring the power to the cities and the costly lawsuits brought against desert plants.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 12, 2014 |
Five years after the Obama administration's renewable energy initiative touched off a building boom of large-scale solar power plants across the desert Southwest, the pace of development has slowed to a crawl, with a number of companies going out of business and major projects canceled for lack of financing. Of the 365 federal solar applications since 2009, just 20 plants are on track to be built. Only three large-scale solar facilities have gone online, two in California and one in Nevada.
January 4, 2014
Re "Power and memory," Editorial, Jan. 2 Your editorial - which supports both the preservation of the historical memory site of the World War II Manzanar detention camp for 10,000 Japanese Americans in the Owens Valley and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power's plans to install a 1,200-acre solar array within sight of Manzanar to reduce California's reliance upon fossil fuels - is flawed by sins of omission and commission. On the one hand, the editorial omits consideration of any alternative sites that the DWP could utilize within its vast Owens Valley acreage to fulfill its mission to develop sources of sustainable energy.
October 18, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO -- California's electric utilities and other power sellers better hope that scientists and engineers come up with a surefire way to bottle lightning. That's a dramatic way of describing the more prosaic goal of finding a way to store large amounts of electricity, something that, up until now, did not seem practicable. On Thursday, the state Public Utilities Commission voted to create a formal "energy storage target" of 1,325 megawatts -- equivalent to the output of almost three modern, natural gas-fired power plants.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 11, 2013 |
Past the neatly coordinated neighborhoods, the master-planned homes and immaculate lawns, on an old military runway in Irvine, a community that imagines life on a smaller scale has taken root. There, hundreds of college students from across the U.S., Canada and Europe have designed and built 19 solar-powered homes in a unique competition to see which will emerge as the most cost-effective, energy-efficient and attractive. Sponsored by the Department of Energy, the Solar Decathlon is a rigorous competition - the rule book is 68 pages long and regulates everything from acceptable average interior temperature (71 to 76 degrees Fahrenheit)