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Solar Energy

  • The cost of solar panels has fallen by more than 50% over the last ten years, and Virginia is a national leader in new solar development. That’s why a team at the University of Virginia is advising communities on how to plan for solar arrays.
  • As prices for solar panels have come down, more and more people are putting them up, but those panels have a limited lifespan of 20 to 30 years. Experts now estimate that by 2050 the planet could be stuck with 78 million tons of used solar panels. Recycling is not cost-effective, but a University of Virginia professor may be on track to change that.
  • There’s great concern in environmental circles about climate change and fears the world can’t move fast enough to avert disaster, but one expert on energy economics says things are changing quickly in the U.S. and here in Virginia. The sun is providing more power than expected, and this state is still going full speed ahead on offshore wind.
  • Not everyone can install solar panels on the roof. Some people and some businesses are renters. Others have buildings where it just wouldn't work. That's why Virginia has a pilot program that would allow for shared solar, letting people in one area take advantage of solar panels in another area.
  • Solar developers who use more than 10 acres of farmland or forest to create a solar farm must conduct an analysis of the potential adverse impact on natural resources. That’s according to a bill now under consideration in the state Senate.
  • For the first time in history, the U.S. is on track to produce more electricity from renewable energy than from coal, according to a new government…