Solar Power http://kut.org en Austin Energy OKs Deal For Texas' Single Biggest Solar Farm http://kut.org/post/austin-energy-oks-deal-texas-single-biggest-solar-farm <p>Austin Energy will soon be getting more of its power from the sun.</p><p>The city-owned electric utility has signed a deal, announced today, with a San Francisco-based firm to build the single largest solar facility in Texas by 2016.&nbsp;Under a 20-year power purchase agreement, Recurrent Energy will build a 150-megawatt solar farm in West Texas.</p><p>Austin Energy spokesperson Carlos Cordova says the deal will help the public utility and the Austin City Council to achieve two goals – "to have 200 megawatts of all of our energy derived from solar power, and 35 percent of all of our energy be derived by renewable energy."</p><p> Thu, 15 May 2014 21:32:48 +0000 Veronica Zaragovia 10428 at http://kut.org Austin Energy OKs Deal For Texas' Single Biggest Solar Farm Austin Church's Solar Project Could Shine Soon http://kut.org/post/austin-churchs-solar-project-could-shine-soon <p><a href="http://stateimpact.npr.org/texas/?p=33425">From StateImpact Texas:</a></p><p style="font-family: 'Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); margin-bottom: 15px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: rgb(0, 0, 0); vertical-align: baseline; background-color: transparent;">The promise of harnessing the power of the sun and turning it into renewable energy has attracted countless businesses, governments and environmental groups. But it might be a church here in Austin that ends up bringing one of the next breakthroughs in solar technology.</p><p><span style="background-color: transparent; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: 'Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 1.5;">To understand the scope of this project, it helps to know that Saint David’s is no little roadside chapel. The Episcopal Church in downtown Austin fills up a whole city block. It provides your typical church services and then some.</span></p><p style="font-family: 'Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); margin-bottom: 15px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: rgb(0, 0, 0); vertical-align: baseline; background-color: transparent;">“We have a coffee shop, we have a restaurant, we have a pre-school for children,” says Terry Nathan, the parish administrator.&nbsp;“The better part of our basement is dedicated to a homeless center."&nbsp;The Church keeps a staff of caterers for its side business hosting events, and has a bookstore and parking garage, which they make available for&nbsp;commercial&nbsp;use. All that takes a lot of electricity.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/126715960&amp;color=ff6600&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="font-family: 'Helvetica Neue', Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); margin-bottom: 15px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: rgb(0, 0, 0); vertical-align: baseline; background-color: transparent;">So about ten years ago, church members got the idea to put solar panels on the parking garage. But they didn’t take the plunge until last year. That’s when low interest rates, improved technology, and government rebates all came together.</p><p> Fri, 27 Dec 2013 12:30:00 +0000 Mose Buchele 9444 at http://kut.org Austin Church's Solar Project Could Shine Soon Largest Solar Farm in Texas Now Helping To Power Your Home http://kut.org/post/largest-solar-farm-texas-now-helping-power-your-home <p><object height="319" width="425"><param name="flashvars" value="offsite=true&amp;lang=en-us&amp;page_show_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fshow%2F&amp;page_show_back_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2F&amp;user_id=9086453@N07&amp;jump_to=" /><param name="movie" value="http://www.flickr.com/apps/slideshow/show.swf?v=109615" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><embed allowfullscreen="true" flashvars="offsite=true&amp;lang=en-us&amp;page_show_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fshow%2F&amp;page_show_back_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2F&amp;user_id=9086453@N07&amp;jump_to=" height="319" src="http://www.flickr.com/apps/slideshow/show.swf?v=109615" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425"></embed></object></p><p>The largest solar farm in Texas is now pumping power to homes across Austin. The <a href="http://austinenergy.posterous.com/webberville-solar-project-dedicated">$100 million</a> facility was switched on last month and city officials held a ribbon cutting ceremony today.</p><p>The solar farm is located about 20 miles east of Austin in Webbervile. Its footprint covers 380 acres, which is about the size of <a href="http://www.austintexas.gov/department/zilker-metropolitan-park">Zilker Park</a>. And it has 127,000 solar panels that slowly shift to follow the sun&rsquo;s path.</p><p>The solar farm can generate up to 30 megawatts, enough electricity to power about 5,000 homes. The energy is being dispersed throughout Austin Energy&rsquo;s grid. While the solar array can&#39;t provide power all the time, it could provide big benefits during the hot, sunny days of summer.&nbsp;</p><p>The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) <a href="http://kut.org/2011/12/texas-electric-grid-faces-uncertainty-in-2012/">has warned</a> that Texas could have a hard time meeting energy demand if the summer of 2012 is the summer of 2011, when the state was brought to the brink of rolling blackouts. And ERCOT chief Trip Doggett couldn&rsquo;t say the Webberville solar farm would be able to solve those challenges.</p><p> Fri, 06 Jan 2012 22:28:01 +0000 Nathan Bernier 3390 at http://kut.org Ground Breaks Tomorrow On Massive Solar Farm in Pflugerville http://kut.org/post/ground-breaks-tomorrow-massive-solar-farm-pflugerville <p>Construction officially begins tomorrow on one of the largest solar farms in the country. The $230 million facility is being built by <a href="http://www.rresolar.com">RRE Austin Solar</a> in Pflugerville.</p><p>Besides hosting a 60 megawatt solar farm, the project also includes a nature trail, a wildflower meadow, trees, and a wind power exhibit. You can check out conceptual maps <a href="http://www.rresolar.com/images/ParkConcept.pdf">here</a> and <a href="http://www.rresolar.com/images/Helios.pdf">here</a>.</p> Tue, 14 Dec 2010 19:47:48 +0000 Nathan Bernier 463 at http://kut.org Ground Breaks Tomorrow On Massive Solar Farm in Pflugerville