Wind power

Expert Voices

Ski resorts turn to renewable energy to cut carbon emissions and costs

Skiers are sitting in a chair lift with panoramic view of the Wasatch Range in the Rocky Mountains on March 02, 2015 in Park City, Utah, United States.
Skiers sitting in a chair lift in Park City, Utah. Photo: EyesWideOpen via Getty Images

Last ski season, Vermont's Bromley ski resort, winner of the 2017 Energy Leadership award, installed low-energy snowmaking guns to optimize snow production while reducing energy waste. The new low-energy guns can operate at 10 cents per hour, compared to older versions' $10 per hour.

The big picture: The ski industry is increasingly embracing new innovations in energy-efficient technology — combined with existing technologies such as wind and solar energy and LED lighting — to reduce its carbon footprint and improve its bottom line.

Expert Voices

Possible PG&E bankruptcy could spell trouble for California renewables

The Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) logo is displayed on a sign in front of the PG&E Service Center on January 15, 2019 in San Rafael, California.
A Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) Service Center in San Rafael, California. Photo: Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

Facing more than $30 billion in potential liability claims for wildfires sparked by its electric system, Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), the largest utility in California, plans to file for bankruptcy by the end of the month. Consumers' lights will stay on regardless of what happens in court, but the future of California’s energy policy might be a bit dimmer.

Why it matters: To meet California’s ambitious climate goals, PG&E has entered into dozens of power purchase agreements (PPAs) with wind and solar farms, for thousands of megawatts, all over the West Coast. If PG&E enters into bankruptcy court, it might not have to pay those contracts, some of which extend past 2040, in full. While that might help PG&E’s balance sheets, it could hurt renewable suppliers that own the assets.

More stories loading.