Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Renewable Energy News, May 26, 2010


Local Vermont & Regional News

Bright future for old race track? - WCAX.COM
In the 1960s and 70s, the Green Mountain Race Track in Pownal was one of the premier sites for horse racing in the Northeast. But money troubles and politics brought an end to that era. "Number of factors," explained Chic Paustian of Green Mountain Energy Park. "The cost of running it, the state of Vermont wanted a larger part of the take which the Legislature voted for, and they couldn't see making money anymore so they switched over to dogs." Pressure from animal rights activists closed the track entirely in 1992. It's now a venue for traveling road shows and events. But officials here say solar power is the future. (Disclosure: SDRS represents the solar developer)
New law regulates old outdoor wood boilers | Vtdigger.org
About nine years ago, April and Greg Bodette of Glover decided to get an outdoor wood boiler. They’d previously used a wood stove to heat their house, but the smoke and dust was a major drawback: They believed the stove contributed to their allergies.

“We seemed to have colds a lot, and three out of the five of us have allergies, so it was horrible,” April Bodette said. “We still wanted to burn wood, though, which is less expensive.”

Their health problems improved dramatically when they got the outside furnace, she said. If they moved, the one thing she’d really want to take is the furnace. “I love it.”

But apparently no renewable energy source — not even wood, Vermont’s old standby — is without its downside.
35 named Green Communities, qualify for state aid - The Boston Globe
Getting cities and towns to shift toward clean energy was such a cornerstone of the state’s 2008 energy legislation that the law is named the Green Communities Act.

Municipalities that meet five clean energy goals are eligible for millions in local aid under the law. State officials had not expected many communities to qualify right away, because the rules are tough.

But Governor Deval Patrick designated 35 cities and towns yesterday as the Commonwealth’s first official Green Communities, making them eligible for $8.1 million in grants for local renewable power and energy-efficiency projects.
National News

Women’s Role in the Clean Energy Economy | Center for American Progress
Women across the nation are preparing to play an integral role in the green economy, and the United States will need their help if we’re going to pull ourselves out of the recession and compete in the new economy on a global scale.

It’s true that men have been hit the hardest in the recession as far an unemployment numbers go, but we will need to seize the opportunity to diversify the future workforce in a way that will incorporate all workers in all areas of the clean energy economy—including those where women have been traditionally underrepresented.

Women in Burlington, Vermont are training for careers in the fields of green construction, renewable energy, and energy efficiency as part of the Vermont Works for Women project. Women Going Green in Atlanta, Georgia is educating women in management and entrepreneurial opportunities in the clean energy economy. And young women in Los Angeles, California are receiving science, technology, engineering, and math education through the Infrastructure Academy, which will prepare them for high-paying, high-demand careers developing the next generation of clean energy technology.
First freshwater offshore wind farm to be developed | Cooler Planet News
Many firsts have been recorded in the world of renewable energy in recent years, and one of the most recently announced ones will be the nation's first freshwater offshore wind farm. This week, GE announced that it will be providing the turbines that will be used for the offshore wind farm, which will be located on Lake Erie off the coast of Northern Ohio, close to Cleveland. The wind project is being developed by the Lake Erie Energy Development Corporation (LEEDCo), and will start off generating 20 megawatts of electricity with five turbines, each of which can generate up to 4 megawatts. GE noted that these are currently the largest turbines that it offers. According to GE, this project could continue to expand dramatically in the coming years. The initial phase of the project is expected to be producing energy by 2012, and by 2020, turbines could be generating as much as 1,000 megawatts on Lake Erie.

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