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Celebrate International Solar Day!

By Climate Guest Contributor on June 17, 2011 at 12:28 pm

"Celebrate International Solar Day!"

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This Saturday, June 18, millions of people in the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom will join the solar power movement to push for energy reform and raise awareness of solar power’s benefits. SolarDay 2010 was the largest solar awareness program in U.S. history, and 2011 promises to be even bigger.

America is falling behind in the clean energy race: China invests an estimated $12 billion per month in clean tech, while clean energy initiatives in America are under attack in New York and elsewhere. Yet the global market for efficient and renewable energy technologies will likely reach $2 trillion by 2020.

America had only 6 percent of the solar world market in 2008 despite engineering the first solar cells. The Recovery Act of 2009 appropriated $7 billion for clean energy reform, but this is only the beginning. It’s time to start pursuing innovative energy alternatives with oil prices high and climate change making extreme weather events increasingly common.

Solar power could help jump-start America’s movement toward a clean energy economy, a stable climate, and secure energy sources. Clean energy industries such as solar can provide jobs and attract investors to power the American economy. Steadily falling prices mean that solar power could be cheaper than fossil fuels in five years. Solar photovoltaics are easy to install, energy efficient, and could even positively affect our national security by reducing dependence on foreign oil.

Given solar power’s potential, SolarDay 2011 has been able to get big names on board for this Saturday. Sponsors include the UN NGO Committee on Sustainable Development, the American Sustainable Business Council, and the Earth Institute of Columbia University. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) has pledged her support for SolarDay, as has Rep. Doris Matsui (D-CA).

Check out the SolarDay.com for details about events, information about solar power and sustainable energy, and how to plan your SolarDay 2011. Keep in mind, though, that the list of events included in the website is incomplete. Anyone can hold a SolarDay 2011 event, so check local listings, organizations, and city and state governments to see if there is an event in your area.

Event highlights include the 14th Annual Congressional Renewable Energy &Energy Efficiency EXPO and forum in Washington, D.C., as well as a solar power fair in New Orleans featuring various environmental nonprofits and solar contractors.

And if you can’t find any events in your area take a look at Solar Day’s media partners to keep informed about solar power and America’s clean energy future.

– A CAP cross-post

Below are the earlier comments from the Facebook commenting system:

Prokaryotes

Champions of clean energy have long argued that New York City has incredible solar potential. Although Manhattan’s vertical skyline may not be ideal, the outer boroughs — full of broad, flat roofs on low-rise buildings — have the right physical characteristics to support large solar arrays. Just as important, the demand patterns of the Big Apple also match solar’s strengths: New York City’s electricity demand is highest on those sunny, sweltering summer days when apartments, offices, and retailers alike are cranking their air conditioners.

Now there’s some hard data that supports these theoretical claims. Yesterday, the New York City Solar America City Partnership, led by Sustainable CUNY, released the New York City Solar Map. The map shows existing solar installations (photovoltaic and water heating) in the city and, more importantly, provides detailed estimates for the potential solar gains throughout the five boroughs.

The most impressive takeaway, as Mireya Navarro reported in the New York Times, is that a full two-thirds of New York City’s rooftops are suitable for solar power, and these “could jointly generate enough energy to meet half the city’s de`mand for electricity at peak periods.”

http://www.onearth.org/blo​g/taking-the-new-york-city​-solar-map-for-a-test-driv​e

June 17 at 2:13pm

Prokaryotes

Big bigger – Game Changer?

Total Buy 60% Of Sunpower For US$1.38bn.

French oil giant Total has completed the acquisition of a 60% stake in US solar panel designer and manufacturer SunPower in a US$1.3bn deal. CFW notes that Total’s decision reflects a broader trend in the industry; major oil and gas companies have recently entered the renewable sector with a view to both diversifying their activities – especially as gas prices remain fairly low and governments have pledged to step up their renewables targets – and improve their environmental credentials. We also stress that the deal provides a financial lifeline for SunPower. The company retains a significant share of the US solar market; however, substantial technological improvements are needed to compete with fast-growing Chinese competitors.

http://www.corporatefinanc​ingweek.com/file/103118/to​tal-buy-60-of-sunpower-for​-us138bn.html

June 17 at 2:15pm

janumakonda

Put SOLAR to WORK, to get inexhaustible, pollution – free energy which cannot be misused.

Dr.A.Jagadeesh, Nellore (AP), India.
Wind Energy Expert.
email: anumakonda.jagadeesh@gmail​.com

June 18 at 7:47am

Paul Magnus

Department Of Energy Makes $150M Bet On Solar Tech.

http://www.huffingtonpost.​com/2011/06/17/dept-of-ene​rgy-makes-150m_n_879542.ht​ml

June 17 at 7:25pm

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