For some years already, Nevada's political leaders have talked about making the state a Mecca for solar energy. It would diversify the economy with a high-tech industry and it would take advantage of our unending sunshine. The County Commission recently gave the green light to a new solar project near Laughlin. Critics decry the waste of government resources for a new and unproven industry. A new report from the Brookings Institution promises to give an accurate count on green energy. So what is the future of the green economy in Southern Nevada and elsewhere in the nation? Is the glass half full or half empty?
UNLV needs to drastically ramp up R&D funding for alternative energy or it will be left on the sidelines. The high value knowledge work will happen elsewhere and S. Nevada will merely be an exploited extraction site.
The solar thermal company Avera (nee Ausra) doesn't design in S. Nevada. HQ is in Silicon Valley. It's kind of moot because their Vegas manufacturing facility seems to be barely open.
Flextronics in N. Las Vegas is manufacturing solar photovoltaic cells but I have to ask, is the transport cost of solar cells so high that it offsets the lower cost of Asian production? Again the design and R&D happens outside of Vegas.
Are there any significant biofuel efforts in S. Nevada?
But then again, if there is a global economic crash, oil will be cheap(er) again...Aunty Palin –Jul 14, 2011 12:15:06 PM