Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Will South Carolina get a Solar industry?

Sen. Sheheen, Senator Reese, Sen. Leventis are putting an amendment on the Senate floor. This amendment addresses Senator Leatherman’s concern’s on the State funds’ and reduces the solar commercial tax credit to $1 million per install and sunsets the law in 2014.
Senator Paul Campbell and others are supporting this amendment. Rep. Dwight Loftis has shepherded this entire process from the introduction of his original bill. H.4374, the original NC language will be in house subcommittee 4/27/10 so that we have another avenue if the Senate floor fails. The Solar Business Alliance would like to thank Rep. Loftis and Frank Knapp of the Small Business Chamber of Commerce for their efforts on passing solar support in SC.

This month was going to be about new product coming to market. Instead I want to talk about some of the work being done at USC. Michael Koman is the Director of the Office of Sustainability at USC. A current US Marine with a Masters from USC he brings mission focus to a very complex and broad issue. How do you get an entire University system to carbon neutrality?
To start they have public awareness projects slated for all over campus and now they have the iconic, new, Darla Moore School of Business. If the school design stays on point it will be the most energy efficient building in the Southeast.
Meanwhile at the Electrical Engineering Dept I had coffee with Dr. Chandra who is doing some revolutionary research work with graphine, (new substance with amazing properties) Gallium Nitrite and Silicon Carbide that gave me a headache trying to contemplate (Think very cheap thin film solar, and air quality monitoring equipment capable of seeing 1pp billion) Bottom line is if they are successful then USC will bring some incredibly useful products to commercialization and attract some great undergrads to stay in state. I will say this one more time, the US solar industry will top $15billion in 2010, SC portion of that should be well over $100 million for 2010; in actuality it will be under $7 million.
Next Month will definitely be about cutting-edge solar innovations.