EERE Network News
October 03, 2007
News and Events
The Solar Decathlon will be held on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., from October 12th to 20th, displaying solar homes from 20 universities across the United States and the world as they compete in 10 contests for the most marketable, aesthetic, and energy-efficient designs.
Solar homes in 46 states, as well as the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, are opening their doors to the public this weekend as part of the National Solar Tour, an event hosted by the American Solar Energy Society and sponsored by DOE.
DOE invested nearly $30 million to accelerate the start-up of three Bioenergy Research Centers. The investment will support the development of cellulosic biofuels, lead by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the University of Wisconsin- Madison and DOE's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Aside from biomass power and solar hot water, renewable energy resources have made little headway in the Southeast, but Florida Power & Light aims to change that with a 300-megawatt solar thermal power plant. More solar thermal power is slated for California, as well.
Eight utilities that are collectively spending about a billion dollars a year on energy efficiency will seek to spend another $500 million more under a new commitment. The utilities will also form a new institute for energy efficiency.
Momentum is building for the development of biorefineries that draw not on edible food stocks but rather from the inedible forms of biomass, called cellulosic biomass. The latest advance is an effort to build a demonstration plant in Tennessee that produces ethanol from switchgrass.
Motiva plans to more than double the oil refining capacity of its refinery in Port Arthur, Texas, an expansion that the company considers equal to building a whole new refinery.