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Australia To Build Southern Hemisphere’s Largest Wind Farm


Australia gave the green light to the southern hemisphere’s largest wind farm, the country’s second major project aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions announced this week.

The go-ahead for the 600 million dollar (460 million US), 183-turbine wind farm in the state of Victoria follows Wednesday’s announcement of the world’s biggest space-age solar power station and extra funds for a pilot project to reduce, capture and store carbon dioxide emissions from a coal-fired power station in the same state.

The wind farm would have the capacity to generate enough power for almost 190,000 homes every year, Victoria state planning minister Rob Hulls said of the 55 square kilometre (22 square mile) project to be built at Macarthur in the state’s west. Energy company AGL would build the farm, which would be able to produce up to 329 megawatts of electricity, Hulls said.

“The approval at the Macarthur wind farm shows that the (Victorian state) government is certainly taking climate change seriously,” he told reporters.

Hulls said the wind farm would help the state government reach its target of sourcing 10 percent of electricity from renewable energy sources by 2016.

Source: Agence France-Presse

CleanTech Photovoltaic Solar Farm


(SAN FRANCISCO –) CalRENEW-1, the first utility scale photovoltaic solar farm to be approved by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) under the state’s Renewables Portfolio Standard program, has received all required environmental approvals and is now shovel ready, announced Bill Barnes, CEO of Cleantech America, Inc., the project developer. The solar farm, which could begin generating zero emission, renewable power as early as the end of 2009 and no later than April 30, 2010, will deliver five megawatts (MW) of emissions-free, green electricity annually to PG&E under a long-term power purchase agreement.

To be located in the city of Mendota in California’s Central Valley, CalRENWE-1 will provide air quality benefits to Fresno County while creating needed green jobs. Photovoltaic solar has been found to create more jobs per megawatt of capacity than any other energy technology, according to a University of California-Berkeley study. Job creation is particularly key in California’s Central Valley, where the jobless rate, historically high, has recently soared to 41 percent, largely due to a three-year drought.

In an effort to stimulate green jobs growth, Cleantech America, Inc. is working with the City of Mendota to develop programs to re-train area residents to become solar installers. The firm has pledged $20,000 toward that effort.

“CalRENEW-1 is the exact type of shovel ready renewable energy project President Obama and the U.S. Department of Energy are encouraging to jump-start the American economy,” Barnes noted. “Having passed the final environmental review, we are now ready to advance to project finance and construction.”

CalRENEW-1 was deemed to have no significant environmental impact under the California Environmental Quality Act. That ruling had been anticipated, Barnes said, since photovoltaic solar is the ultimate source of environmentally clean renewable energy. Photovoltaic solar creates no emissions, uses minimal water, requires no hazardous materials use or storage, and has virtually no visual or noise impact.

CalRENEW-1 will be one of the most advanced photovoltaic solar facilities in the world, helping California meet its stringent renewable energy and carbon reduction goals. Avoided emissions from CalRENEW-1 will be an estimated 6.3 million lbs/year of CO2, the primary source of global warming and climate change, plus 6,905 lbs/year of NOx and 5,451 lbs/year of SO2 (source: EPA eGRID2002 database).

Courtesy Cleantech America Inc.

Tehachipi Wind Farm

tehachipi wind farm

The Tehachapi Wind Farm, with around 5,000 wind turbines, is the second largest collection of wind generators in the world (the largest is at the Altamont pass, near Livermore and the San Francisco Bay area), but is now the largest wind power array in the world in output. The turbines are operated by a dozen private companies, and collectively produce about 800 million kilowatt-hours of electricity, enough to meet the residential needs of 350,000 people every year. With over 15,000 turbines in the state (7,000 at Altamont and 3,000 at San Gorgonio Pass, near Palm Springs), wind power in California makes up about 1% of California’s electricity. Located five miles West of Mojave.

Green Cooling Your Home

By Dave Allan
During these hot summer months keeping cool becomes priority one. But let’s not mortgage our future to keep cool now. Some green cooling tips you can utilize;

* Install a ceiling fan to circulate the air instead of cranking on the a/c and drawing high amounts of electricity. Remember the brown outs that happened last year?

* Use greenery around your home to naturally shade your home and reduce the inside temperature.

* If you have a basement, hang out in it during the hottest part of the day. You’d be surprised at the difference in temperature by just going down one floor.

* Open windows on the west side of your home in the morning and the east side in the evening. This will allow the coolest air to circulate through your home.