renewable energy

Environment
7:00 am
Fri March 21, 2014

Another Question For Eastern Kentucky Biomass Plant: Is There Enough Water?

The future home of the ecoPower biomass plant.
Credit Frankie Steele / KYCIR

This story is part of a series from the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting and WFPL.  Read the other stories here.  

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Environment
3:31 pm
Wed November 20, 2013

Swiss Chemist Wins Inaugural Conn Prize for Solar Cell Discovery

Michael Graetzel
University of Louisville

The University of Louisville has announced the winner of the first Leigh Ann Conn Prize for Renewable Energy. The award goes to Swiss chemist Michael Graetzel for his work developing a new kind of solar cell that’s easier and less expensive to produce than traditional silicon-based cells.

The Leigh Ann Conn Prize was announced last year.   It honors game-changing work in renewable energy and energy efficiency.

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Environment
4:52 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Louisville Solar Tour Scheduled for Saturday

Fernando Tomas Wikimedia Commons

Louisville residents will have a chance to tour residential and commercial solar installations this weekend. The Louisville Solar Tour highlights 31 sites around town that are using the sun to meet their energy needs.

The tour stops are all over the city—from St. William Church in California to the Fairdale Branch Library to the far East End. Solar-powered Apocalypse Brew Works is on the tour, as is the Green Building in NuLu. At most of the stops, home and business owners will share information about the solar installations and how much energy they generate.

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Environment
12:00 pm
Fri August 23, 2013

Solar House at U of L Envisioned as Solution to Temporary Housing After Disasters

The front view of the solar house, with solar panels visible on the roof.
Erica Peterson WFPL

A solar-powered demonstration house will be open to the public tomorrow at the University of Louisville. A team of students from three universities has built the house to compete in an international competition.

In a nearly empty lot off Third Street, students are sawing, hammering, and putting the finishing touches on a two-bedroom house.

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Environment
2:34 pm
Mon August 5, 2013

New EPA Tool Estimates Potential for Renewable Energy on Kentucky's Contaminated Land

The Environmental Protection Agency says there's significant potential for renewable energy projects on contaminated land in Kentucky.

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Environment
10:38 am
Tue May 28, 2013

America's New Energy Export Is...Trees?

Σ64 Wikimedia Commons

When we talk about exporting energy sources to other countries, the conversation tends to center on fossil fuels. Here in Kentucky, it's all about coal, and even as the nation cuts back on coal burning, many mines are hoping that burgeoning economies in Asia will help fill in the economic gaps.

But the BBC Newshour had an interesting story this morning about another fuel that America is exporting: wood. Trees that are grown in the Southeast are being sent to Europe to fuel biomass boilers, and there's a debate about whether that process actually helps the European Union further its stated goals of reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

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Environment
6:04 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

New Law Clarifies Regulation of Biomass, But Doesn't Provide Any Guarantees

David Wright Wikimedia Commons

A new bill signed into law by Governor Steve Beshear last week clarifies the rules that regulate biomass plants in Kentucky.

The bill gives additional guidance to the Public Service Commission on how to regulate biomass plants that sell power to a utility in Kentucky, with one particular project in mind: a biomass plant outside Hazard. Construction on the plant—owned by Lexington-based ecoPower—is expected to begin on the plant sometime this year.

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Environment
3:33 pm
Tue February 19, 2013

New Deal Will Send Parks Department's Wood Waste to Rubbertown Biomass Boiler

A woodland biomass crop in England.
David Wright Wikimedia Commons

Metro Government will start selling landscaping debris gathered from Louisville parks to a Rubbertown facility that will burn it for energy.

Last fall, a company called Recast Energy took control of a boiler in Rubbertown that supplies steam to the Lubrizol and Zeon Chemical plants. The boiler used to be coal-fired, but Recast engineered it to run on biomass.

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Environment
8:00 am
Sun November 25, 2012

Deadline is Fast-Approaching on Wind Energy Tax Credit

Harvey McDaniel Wikimedia Commons

Over the next few weeks, Congress will decide whether to extend a key tax credit to the wind industry. The wind production tax credit—or PTC—subsidizes wind production at 2.2 cents per kilowatt hour, and without action it will expire at the end of the year.

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