Morning Brief: West Virginia legislature votes down bill to legalize solar PPAs, documentary on Alaskan PV microgrid


West Virginia legislature votes down bill to legalize solar PPAs: Although the bill did not pass this year, “Support for legalizing PPAs is growing among West Virginia lawmakers and the public,” said Autumn Long of Solar United Neighbors whose website claims that “even a very limited pilot program” would result in 13 MW of clean energy deployed, and nearly 400 new jobs. West Virginia had 8 MW of solar installed as of last September, according to the national solar association SEIA.  Source: West Virginians for Energy Freedom

Documentary shows indigenous Alaskans making the switch to renewables: Deering, Alaska is a remote indigenous village of 160 residents, 30 miles from the Arctic Circle. The rising cost of flying in diesel to power the small community (as high as $12 per gallon, 46,000 gallons a year) led the residents to decide to make a change. After partnering with NANA and Launch Alaska, the town was able to install a 50 kW BoxPower solar microgrid. The process has been covered in a documentary, which you can watch here. Source: BoxPower

Outback Power releases AC coupling feature for Skybox hybrid inverter: Outback Power has released an AC coupling firmware update to its SkyBox hybrid inverter, allowing battery systems to be added for backup and time-of-use energy management. Skybox, like many other inverter and storage companies is attributing this addition, at least partly, to the Public Safety Power cuthoffs in California, which pv magazine USA has covered extensively, from increased battery adoption figures, to a battery and inverter solution guide. Source: Outback Power

BP Solar customers can be compensated for faulty panels: Stemming from a 2016 lawsuit between BP Solar and Home Depot involving solar panels manufactured between 1999 and 2007 with an S-type junction box — customers who bought such panels could be entitled to benefits from a $45.33 million common fund or a separate $20 million claims-made settlement. Any individual who purchased the BP solar panels for installation on a property or currently owns a property on which these panels are installed is eligible and should file a claim online or call 844-360-2767. Source: Birka-White Law Offices and Arnold & Porter LLP

Martha’s Vineyard considering 100% renewables by 2040: A charge is being led on Martha’s Vineyard for the entire six-town island to be powered entirely by renewable energy in the next 20 years. Martha’s Vineyard currently gets 5.2% of its electricity from renewables. The island’s towns will vote on the measure over a series of town halls throughout the spring. As it stands, transportation is about 45% of the island’s energy use, while home heating and electricity make up the remaining 55%. Source: WGBH

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