the ECOreport


& Other Revelations from the Local Power Channel


All illustrations courtesy Local Power Inc

By Roy L Hales

April 10, 2015 (San Diego's East County) - Local Power Inc compares one of the Biggest threats to grid stability to a traffic jam. It is a direct consequence of population centers relying on distant power sources. The nations power lines are full of electricity that travels hundreds of miles before it is used. When too much energy converges on a local substation, it overheats, there are black-outs or brown-outs, and costly upgrades are needed. An obvious alternative solution is to develop sources close to where the power is needed, so that more transient electricity can be taken off the grid. This is one of the many revelations on the Local Power Channel, a branded channel on the ECOreport.



Originally Published on the ECOreport

Editor’s Note: The ECOreport is pleased to present a unique article by Dr. Allan Hoffman, former senior executive at the Department of Energy, who served under five Presidents between 1978 and 2012, reviewing ECOreport partner, Robert Lundahl’s film, “Who Are My People?”

At the ECOreport, we have been aware that Lundahl’s film captures a key transition in the history of renewable energy, as concentrating solar, which had been developed in the US, began to return in the hands of international firms building large solar facilities in the Mojave desert.

Lundahl ventured to these remote locations to capture responses from Native American elders whose communities and tribal groups have had a connection to the land since time immemorial. The film is about resulting conflicts in values that define renewable energy in its current form, and provide a consultative view about how we implement these technologies today, and in the future.

March 6, 2015--I was invited to review the documentary film “Who Are My People?” because of my professional familiarity with concentrating solar power technologies. I was responsible for the U.S. Department of Energy’s broad range of renewable energy electricity programs for several years during the Clinton Administration. “Who Are My People?” is well worth watching.



By Roy L Hales

Photos Credit: Parke Ewing

Originally published in the ECOreport

The Ocotillo Wind Farm keeps limping on. According to a recent article in East County Magazine, the site was producing just under 18% of capacity during the first quarter of 2014. As that was the windy season, it seems unlikely that Ocotillo will beat the slightly less than 16% average they set for the first for year of operation (2013). Then there is what the Bureau of Land Management keeps refering to as "general maintenance."