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Energy & solar news summary #1

We’re all about saving you energy. Every week we round up the latest in energy and solar news so you don’t have to. 

The Electricity Authority’s consultation programme, reviewing power grid transmission prices, is being met with growing concern. The prospect of power bills jumping 10% in Northland and the West Coast and almost 5% in Auckland is "shocking", according to energy campaigner Molly Melhuish. While prices could rise in those areas the NZ Herald reports that the Tiwai aluminium smelter could have it’s grid transmission charges cut from around $60 million to $10 million a year.

The way we get electricity is about to change forever. Bloomberg Business highlights six shifts that will transform markets over the next 25 years, with the top three related to solar. This theme is picked up by MSNBC which looks at how solarZero programmes, like the one we have pioneered here in New Zealand, have driven solar to become the fastest growing source of electricity in the US. The New Yorker takes a deep dive into solar energy and its strong future growth prospects in “Power to the People: Why the rise of green energy makes utility companies nervous”.

The Nelson Budget Service is concerned by the increasing number of people taking out loans to pay their power bills this winter. CNN Money reports that similar financial concerns in the US led President Obama to announce plans to put more solar on low-income housing and expand access to solar power for renters.

In Marlborough Yealands winery has put its live solar data online so that you can track the growing conditions at one of our nation’s most sustainable vineyards.