renewable energy

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

The new wind farm would be located off the coast, about 17 nautical miles northeast of Ocean City, Maryland. If approved, construction for the project -- dubbed the Skipjack Wind Farm -- would begin as early as 2020, and produce 120 megawatts of power. That's four times more than the Block Island Wind Farm is expected to produce.  

Deepwater Wind is in the early stages of developing a 90 megawatt offshore wind farm 30 miles east of Montauk New York, scheduled to start operating in 2022.  

David Goehring / Creative Commons License via Flickr

A trio of New England states has selected projects that will add about 460 megawatts of renewable energy to the region’s market in the next few years. Bidding companies can start negotiating with utilities in Rhode Island, Connecticut and Massachusetts.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Has little Rhode Island become the center for offshore wind power in the United States? Sure seems like it. The nation’s first offshore wind farm will start operating off Block Island next month. The project drew interest from European visitors recently, and this week, Rhode Island hosted an offshore wind energy conference.

Angela Evancie / Vermont Public Radio File Photo

New England now gets nearly 10 percent of its energy from renewable sources - with more on the way. But that change is posing challenges for the region’s electric grid. The Big Switch: New England's Energy Moment looks at this transformative time for how the region powers itself.

RIPR File Photo

Across the country, a growing number of major corporations, like Google and Amazon, are buying their own renewable energy. They’re not waiting for utilities to make the shift away from fossil fuels. Here in the Ocean State, the Narragansett Bay Commission is also moving in that direction to save money and reduce carbon emissions.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Four of five turbines that will produce energy off the coast of Block Island later this fall have been completely installed.

If the weather cooperates, the fifth will also be up by the end of the week, said GE Offshore Wind CEO Anders Soe-Jensen during a small media boat tour yesterday of Deepwater Wind's Block Island Wind Farm.

The city’s planning commission has approved a 21-megawatt solar farm, covering 60 acres. City planners say the solar panels will provide renewable energy. But some residents opposed the project. They say the solar farm will harm land that could be set aside for conservation. Douglas Doe, a neighbor of the property, said the project will harm visitors’ enjoyment of the nearby forests.  

“So anybody going to enjoy the conservation land that we paid for is going to be confronted by one chain link fence, a gravel road, and anywhere from 40-60,000 solar panels,” said Doe.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Governor Gina Raimondo has signed an $8.9 billion budget into law. It includes millions of dollars for environmental initiatives. Rhode Island Public Radio news director Elisabeth Harrison gets the details from our environmental reporter Ambar Espinoza. 

Courtesy of SmartPower

A state program designed to make buying and installing solar panels affordable and easy is available for residents and small businesses in Providence through late June.

sand dunes
Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Gov. Gina Raimondo’s proposed budget devotes about 1.1 percent of all state spending to the state’s two major environmental agencies: the Department of Environmental Management and the Coastal Resources Management Council. The DEM got a small bump from the governor’s last budget, while the CRMC held steady. We break down the numbers.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Burrillville has become the unlikely epicenter for controversy over natural gas. The town is home to a natural gas-fired power plant, two pipelines, and two compressor stations to push gas through the pipelines.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Humans have been harnessing energy from rivers for thousands of years. Think water wheels from Ancient Greece and modern hydropower plants, like the Hoover Dam. Brown University engineers have a new take on a hydropower device that could harness enough energy to power communities in remote locations or along fast-flowing rivers.

Providence Business News Editor Mark Murphy joins Rhode Island Public Radio's Dave Fallon for our weekly business segment The Bottom Line.  

Our guest this week is Rhode Island Energy Commissioner Marion Gold. She discusses a controversial plan to open a natural gas plant in northern Rhode Island, and what the future may hold for renewable energy and energy prices.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Deepwater Wind has installed the first of five steel foundations for a wind farm that will sit three miles off the coast of Block Island. The project is expected to produce enough energy to power 17,000 homes. State and federal officials got an up-close look at construction for the first time yesterday. Rhode Island Public Radio environmental reporter Ambar Espinoza was with them, and she reports that Rhode Island has become an example for how to build renewable energy. 

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Deepwater Wind started to put steel in the water this week for the Block Island Wind Farm. Island residents have mixed feelings about the construction.  

Susan Torrey lives on Block Island all year. She and her husband have been waiting to see visible signs of what is expected to be the nation’s first offshore wind farm.

“We kept looking around and hadn’t seen anything,” said Torrey. “And he came home [and said], ‘Guess what I saw?’ So we said, ‘Let’s go over to the Southeast Light and take a look.’ So we did!”

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