solar energy industries

President Trump is trying to start making good on his promises to coal workers. "He made a pledge to the coal industry, and he’s going to do whatever he can to help those workers,“ a senior administrative official said Monday ahead of the executive order’s signing. 

But there are problems with both Trump’s nostalgic Make America Great Again coal promises and Obama’s radical vision for a reshaped economy. Trump’s ignores the reality of a changing energy industry. Solar jobs, for example, have taken off over the past decade. They now account for some 260,000 energy jobs in the country, the majority of those are held by installers. That’s almost four times the number of coal industry jobs, about 70,000, as of May 2015, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

What Trump Misses About Energy Jobs In America

Photo by Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post via Getty Images
California Votes to Retain System That Pays Solar Users Retail Rate for Excess Power
Regulators extended a policy that has helped the expansion of rooftop solar power, adding fees for future users but rejecting changes sought by big utilities.
By Diane Cardwell

In a big win for renewables, California votes to keep net metering for rooftop solar

California regulators voted in favor of net metering yesterday, continuing the program that provides benefits to rooftop solar users. Consumers who produce their own power through rooftop solar can then sell that power back to the grid, both benefiting economically and improving overall efficiency. The vote comes at a time when nearly half the states out of the more than 40 that have net metering policies are considering changing them to the detriment of the customer. Utilities in California said they were “disappointed” by the decision, but solar stocks jumped after the vote.

The Year That Was

by Michael Keller

It’s the last day of 2013 and the past year has proven to be chock full of astounding science and technology news. From major advances to the announcement of new initiatives, this year offered glimpses of a better future through the liberal application of the scientific method and some good engineering. We’re recapping a few of them and checking some of the predictions we made at the start of the year.

Some of the biggest stories:

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