May 2012 Meeting

Topic: Searchlight Wind Energy Project

Presented by: Nancy Christ, Planning and Environmental Coordinator for the BLM Renewable Energy Coordination Office in Las Vegas.

Pine Tree Wind Energy Project

Searchlight Wind Energy, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Duke Energy, is proposing to develop a 200-megawatt wind energy generation facility on public land located near Searchlight, Nevada, approximately 60 miles southeast of Las Vegas. The proposed project would include up to 96 wind turbines.

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April 2012 Meeting

Solar NV meets monthly and everyone is invited!

Date: April 19th. (third Thursday of every month)

Time: 6:30 PM

Location: University of Nevada – Las Vegas (UNLV)

Frank & Estella Beam Hall – Room 110
4505 S Maryland Pkwy
Las Vegas, NV 89154
(Maps, directions, parking info)

Meeting Topic: UNLV Solar Decathlon Project
The Autonomy House

UNLV's Autonomy HouseThe UNLV Solar Decathalon Team will compete in the 2013 Department of Energy Solar Decathalon.

Student team leaders and their faculty advisor will present their project at Solar NV’s monthly meeting on April 19th. Here is a colorful description of The Autonomy House project from Team Las Vegas (PDF).

In a recent Green Living column published in the Las Vegas Review Journal, Solar NV co-founder Steve Rypka wrote:

The Solar Decathlon is a serious challenge and only twenty collegiate teams are chosen to compete in this prestigious biennial event, first held in 2002. The next one will take place in the fall of 2013 and it is special, for a few reasons. All previous Solar Decathlons have been held in Washington, D.C. In 2013, it will take place in sunny Orange County, California. That puts it into easy driving distance for Southern Nevadans. What a great opportunity!

If that’s not special enough for you, how about the fact that UNLV is among the teams that will be competing? This is very exciting news and something our entire community can and should rally behind. Students and faculty celebrated the recent announcement after years of hard work honing their winning application. Congratulations to Team Las Vegas! [Read the full article]

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The HOMES Act

Energy Retrofit Legislation Introduced to Create Jobs and Help Homeowners Reduce Energy Costs

Washington, DC — On March 21, Efficiency First joined Congressman McKinley and Congressman Welch, the US Chamber of Commerce, and other industry leaders to announce the Home Owner Managing Energy Savings (HOMES) Act – bipartisan legislation to provide incentives for homeowners who perform energy retrofits.

Efficiency First Executive Director Jay Murdoch said: “More than any single interest group, it is the contractor and home energy auditor members of Efficiency First who are invited into homes every day – helping to solve real comfort and energy efficiency problems for homeowners.  Because of this close interaction with the homeowner, this is the group that best understands the needs of homeowners and equally important, what motivates them to make the choice to improve their home.  By offering incentives tied back to demonstrated savings, the HOMES Act will be a catalyst and will cause consumers to take action and hire a qualified contractor to make the desired home improvements.”

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Solar 15% Returns Lure Investments From Google to Buffett

A new article in Bloomberg Businessweek is reporting on the shift major investors are making that favors solar energy. According to the article:

U.S. solar developers are luring cash at record rates from investors ranging from Warren Buffett to Google Inc. (GOOG) and KKR & Co. by offering returns on projects four times those available for Treasury securities.

Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK/A) together with the biggest Internet search company, the private equity company and insurers MetLife Inc. (MET) and John Hancock Life Insurance Co. poured more than $500 million into renewable energy in the last year. That’s the most ever for companies outside the club of banks and specialist lenders that traditionally back solar energy, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance data.

Once so risky that only government backing could draw private capital, solar projects now are making returns of about 15 percent, according to Stanford University’s center for energy policy and finance. That has attracted a wider community of investors eager to cash in on earnings stronger than those for infrastructure projects from toll roads to pipelines.

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March 2012 Meeting

Solar NV meets monthly and everyone is invited!

Note: We’ve changed meeting locations, day of the week and starting time!

6:30 PM on the third Thursday of every month. Our next meeting is March 15th.

University of Nevada – Las Vegas (UNLV)
Frank & Estella Beam Hall – Room 110
4505 S Maryland Pkwy
Las Vegas, NV 89154

(Maps, directions, parking info)

Meeting Topic: Energy Efficiency Panel

Comments from our members and meeting attendees have mentioned an array of interests from homeowners looking to maximize their own efficiency or lower their footprints to citizens looking to get involved on a community or regional level. This panel will speak about energy efficiency on the personal homeowner’s level, the business level, and the community level.

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Feb 2012 Meeting

Solar NV meets monthly and everyone is invited!

Note: We’ve changed meeting locations, day of the week and starting time!

6:30 PM on the third Thursday of every month. Our next meeting is February 16th.

University of Nevada – Las Vegas (UNLV)
Frank & Estella Beam Hall – Room 110
4505 S Maryland Pkwy
Las Vegas, NV 89154

(Maps, directions, parking info)

Our meetings feature speakers from a variety of renewable energy disciplines and are also a great place to network with people who share an interest in renewable energy.

For February’s meeting, we have Greg Helseth as a speaker:

Greg HelsethGreg Helseth is the Southern Nevada Renewable Energy Manager for the Bureau of Land Management. Stationed in Las Vegas, he had been with the BLM for three years, managing the Renewable Energy Coordination Office Southern Nevada District. Greg successfully accomplished two fast track Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) in 2010 and has the first solar energy site on federal land sending power to the grid. Southern Nevada has 5 EIS (4 solar, 1 wind) processing now. Before the BLM, Greg worked as a Mechanical Engineer, Senior Mechanical Engineer, and Engineering Manager for more than 15 years. He recently graduated from the University of Phoenix with a Bachelor of Science in Business Management Green and Sustainable Enterprise.

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