Dark money group steps up support for new fee on solar panels

A dark money group has increased its efforts to support a bill (SF583) that would let utility companies impose new fees on homeowners and businesses that install solar panels. The REAL Coalition of Iowa was incorporated as a nonprofit on Jan. 23, apparently to support the House and Senate versions of the bill. A dark money group is a nonprofit that engages in political activity but does not disclose its funders. […]

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New program will help reduce the cost of solar power for Johnson County homeowners

A new program to help Johnson County and West Branch residents interested in adding solar power to their homes will hold its first public meeting on Thursday at Johnson County Health and Human Services Building. Solarize Johnson County is a collaboration between the county, six cities and the nonprofit Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA).

“First and foremost, it’s an educational effort so people can learn about solar,” said Becky Soglin, sustainability coordinator for Johnson County. “The focus is residential use.” […]

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Greenhouse gas emissions decline in Iowa as renewable energy use increases

Iowa’s greenhouse gas emissions decreased last year, thanks, in part, to increases in the amount of wind and solar power the state is producing, according to a new report from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR). The 2016 Iowa Statewide Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Report shows the state emitted 128 million metric tons of greenhouse gases, a decrease of two percent from 2015 levels. […]

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Iowa leads the Midwest in shift to clean energy

The EPA may be in jeopardy, but states like Iowa are stepping up in the movement toward clean energy sources. The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), a nonprofit science advocacy organization, ranked Iowa 10th in the nation and first in the Midwest for transitioning to clean energy in their 94-page report, “Clean Energy Momentum: Ranking […]

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Tim Dwight sees the light in solar energy

Tim Dwight

According to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Germany receives roughly as much sunlight each year as Alaska. Despite its lack of sunlight, in May 2012, Germany set a new record in solar power production when over half the country’s electric demand was met with solar power. Germany’s photovoltaic (PV) solar panels were feeding 22 gigawatts […]

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