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Definitive Solar Institute

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Definitive Solar Institute

The Definitive Solar Institute - Advancing the Solar Profession

Members of the Definitive Solar Institute seek to learn:

  • How do you develop solar projects with long-term financial success?
  • What are the best solar technology products in the market - today and tomorrow?

If you are searching for these answers - whether from the perspective of technology, finance, or policy, then you should subscribe to our FREE email list to receive updates from the Definitive Solar Institute here:

About the Definitive Solar Institute

Our online reference center and resource guide is for solar development and installation professionals who make system component design recommendations and purchasing decisions in the commercial and utility scale market.

  • PSI Ratings - Unbiased Ratings for Solar PV modules
  • Webinars - Browse our list of online events for solar professionals
  • Resource Guide - Find organizations in the solar industry, and compare products by category
  • Whitepapers - Download whitepapers from industry experts
Resource Guide 

Company Profile Name Address Country
Aon plc 2711 North Haskell Ave., Suite 800 Dallas, Texas 75204-2999 United States
Bloomberg New Energy Finance
EcoFasten Solar 4741 W Polk St., Ste. 4 Phoenix, Arizona 85043 United States
Energy Storage Association 1155 15th Street, NW, Suite 500 Washington, District of Columbia 20005 United States
Hunt Power 1900 North Akard Street Dallas, Texas 75201-2300 United States
Keeping PACE in Texas 98 San Jacinto Blvd., Suite 1900 Austin, Texas 78701 United States
Ningbo Ulica Solar Science & Technology
Principal Solar, Inc. 2700 Fairmount Street Dallas, Texas 75201 United States
Rushton Atlantic, LLC United States
SPG Solar
Texas Renewable Energy Industries Association
Tigo Energy
Trina Solar
TUV Rheinland
Upsolar Transamerica Pyramid Center, 45th Floor, 600 Montgomery St. San Francisco, California 94111 United States
Viridian TELEPHONE 203.663.5089 MAILING ADDRESS 1055 Washington Blvd., 7th Floor Stamford, Stamford, Connecticut 06901 United States
ACORE American Council on Renewable Energy
Ambassador Energy
American Electric Technologies, Inc.
American Solar Energy Society
Argonne-Northwestern Solar Energy Research Center
Arizona Research Institute for Solar Energy
Arizona Solar Energy Industries Association
Braya Solar Group
Buildit Solar
California Solar Energy Industries Association
Center for Environmental Innovation in Roofing
Centre for Energy Studies
Centro de Investigacion en Energia
CitiGreen, Inc.
Colorado Solar Energy Industries Association
El Paso Solar Energy Association
enerG Magazine
Energy Self-Reliant States
Environmental Defense Fund 1875 Connecticut Ave, NW, Suite 600 Washington, District of Columbia 20009 United States
Fierce Energy
Florida Solar Energy Center
Florida Solar Energy Industries Association
Fraunhofer USA
Global New Energy Solutions of Oregon
Gravity Power
Green Power Conferences
Greentech Media
Home Energy Magazine
Home Power Magazine
Illinois Renewable Energy Association
Independent Energy Producers Association
Information Bridge
Institut fur Solarenergieforschung GmbH
Institut fur Solartechnik SPF (Solar Energy Lab)
Institut für Thermodynamik und Wärmetechnik
Institute of Energy Conversion
Jinsu Solar
Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy
Journal of Solar Energy Engineering
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Mid-Atlantic Solar Energy Industries Association
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Netherlands Energy Research Foundation (ECN)
New York Solar Energy Industries Association
Nimbkar Agricultural Research Institute (NARI)
North American Clean Energy
North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association 1111 Haynes Street Suite 109 Raleigh, North Carolina 27604 United States
North Texas Renewable Energy Group
Northern California Solar Energy Association
One Block Off the Grid (1BOG)
Oregon Department of Energy
PACENow 141 Tompkins Ave, 3rd Floor Pleasantville, New York 10570 United States
Pew Clean Energy Business Network
RBS Energy Consulting
Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory
Renewable Energy World
Roof Integrated Solar Energy (RISE)
Sandia National Laboratories Photovoltaic Program
Schatz Energy Research Center
Solar 3.0
Solar Austin
Solar Daily
Solar Electric Power Association
Solar Energy
Solar Energy Industries Association
Solar Feeds
Solar Industry
Solar Power International (SPI) 1737 King St., Suite 600 Alexandria, Virginia 22314 United States
Solar Power News
Solar Today
SunShot Initiative
Texas Solar Energy Society
Texas Solar Power Association
The Solar Foundation
U.S. Department of Energy
Vote Solar Initiative
World of Photovoltaics
Österreichisches Forschungs & Prüfzentrum Arsena...
Marex Spectron
PowerParasol by Strategic Solar Energy, LLC 9820 E THOMPSON PEAK PKWY #732 SCOTTSDALE, Arizona 85255-6658 United States
Stahl, Bernal & Davies 7320 N. MoPac, Suite 211 Austin, Texas 78731 United States
Talmage Solar Engineering, Inc.
Energy Inc.
Evergreen Solar, National Council for Solar Growth United States
First Solar, Inc.
Flash Technology, A Division of SPX
GCL-Poly Energy
Gloria Solar
Green Mountain Energy
Green Mountain Power
Hanwha SolarOne
Helios Solar Works
Hollaender Solar Mounting Systems
Itek Energy
JA Solar
Jinko Solar
Kaco New Energy 4036 Binz-Engleman Road Suite 208 San Antonio, Texas 78219 United States
LDK Solar
LG Electronics
Lightway Solar
Mitsubishi Electric Solar
Motech Americas
MX Solar
nbsolar (Sun Earth Solar Power)
Panasonic USA
Perlight Solar
Phono Solar
REC Group
Sanyo Electric
Schüco USA
Solar Action Alliance United States
SunPerfect Solar
Tainergy Tech
Talesun Solar
Westinghouse Solar
Yingli Solar
1st Choice Energy
3Megawatt 567 Sutter St San Francisco, California 94102 United States
ACA Solar
Adam Capital
AE Solar Energy
aleo solar
American Precision Solar
American Prefabricated Structures, Inc. P.O. Box 879 Sherman, Texas 75091-0879 United States
Apex Solar, Inc.
Applied Energy Technologies (AET)
Applied Power Technologies
Array Technologies
AU Optronics
Auxin Solar
Baja Construction Inc. 221 Foster Street Martinez, California 94553
BenQ Solar
Black and Veatch
Bloo Solar
Bosch Solar Energy
California Power Save
Captive Fuel
Carina Technology
Cbeyond Solar Inc.
Centrosolar America
Chevron Energy Solutions
China Sunergy
Chint Solar (Astroenergy)
Cirasys 17217 Waterview Pkwy, Ste 1.202c Dallas, Texas 75252 United States
Clean Edge
Clean Energy Pipeline United Kingdom
Clean Power Research
CNPV Solar Power
Cobra Monitoring
Colored Solar
Constant Solar Power Corporation
CP Advisors, LLC
DEB Solar
Deck Monitoring, LLC
DIA Spark Energy 515 Plainfield Avenue, Suite 1 Edison, New Jersey 08817 United States
Don Pickett & Associates, Inc.
Dorado Construction Inc. Solar
DPW Solar
Draker Laboratories, Inc
DS Energy Solutions
E-Village Solar
Earth Wind & Solar, Inc.
Ecolibrium Solar
Electric Utility Consultants, Inc.
Enecsys Ltd
Energize Parking
Energy Matters
Enphase Energy, Inc
GMI Solar 350 Babcock Road Tolland, Connecticut 06084 United States
Grape Solar
Greenstone Capital
ImagineSolar 4000 Caven Road Austin, Texas 78702
infiniRel Corporation
JK Solar
JT Solar Inc.
Kachan & Co.
Lauritzen Inc
Lighthouse Solar
Locus Energy
LST Energy
MAGE Solar
Magnum Energy
Mapdwell 24 Roland Street Suite 303 Boston, Massachusetts 02129 United States
McKinstry Essention, Inc
Meteocontrol GmbH
Mounting Systems, Inc.
My Solar Stats
N2 Electric, Inc.
NextEra Energy
Nova West Solar
Noveda Technologies
Novogradac & Company
Ohmic Electric
Pacific Power Renewables
Pasan Measurement Systems
Pazz Group
Peak Demand Automation
Pepper Hamilton LLP
Pioneer Electric
Polar Racking
Power-One Renewable Energy Solutions
Power-One Vision Systems
Powernet Global Services, Inc.
Professional Solar Products
Pulse Energy
PV Racking
Pyramid Solar Energy
Radback Energy Services
RBI Solar
REC Solar, Inc.
Renewable Integrator
RGS Energy
Rich Hessler
RR Electric Heating & Air Conditioning
Silverback Solar
Skyline Solar
SMA Solar Technology
Smart Grid News
SnapNrack PV Mounting Systems
So-Cal Solar
Socal Solar Energy, Inc
Solar CenTex
Solar Design Associates
Solar Design Tool
Solar FlexRack
Solar Integrated Technologies
Solar Nexus
Solar Power Engineer Corporation
Solar Power, Inc.
Solar Racks
Solar Rating & Certification Corporation
Solar Roadways
SolarDock 201 W 14th St, Suite 101 Wilmington, Delaware 19899 United States
SolarEdge Technologies
Sonoma Solar
Southern California Telephone & Energy
SREC Trade
SST Solar USA 15979 N. 76th Street, Suite A Scottsdale, Arizona 85260 United States
SunLink Corporation
SunReports, Inc.
SunRun, Inc
Telvent USA Corp.
Texas Clean Energy Coalition
Texas Solar Power Company
The Crest Company, Inc
Thermal Energy System Specialists
Thompson Technology Industries (TTi)
Trimark Associates
Vermont SPEED
Viasyn, Inc.
Vikram Solar US Boulder, Colorado 80303 United States
West Ecosystems Technology, Inc
Xslent Energy Technologies
YES Yankee Environmental Systems, Inc.
ZEP Solar


  • Bi-Partisan Support Driving Solar Energy Development By: Michael Gorton, Chief Executive Officer / Chairman, Principal Solar; Mark Victor Hansen, Founder and Co-creator, Chicken Soup for the Soul; Allen West, President and CEO , National Center for Policy Analysis; and Laura Carabello, Founder and Principal, CPR Strategic Marketing Communications

    Over the last two decades, photovoltaic (PV) solar energy has experienced one of the most remarkable growth curves in the U.S. technology sector. Over this period the cost of solar generation has decreased dramatically, and the amount installed has increased exponentially. Many have tied this success to public incentives and subsides. In the U.S., Democrats have supported development and growth while Republicans have generally ignored or even opposed the entrée of PV. Some believe that once supporting policies end, the demise of the solar industry will follow. The observed trends do not support this belief. This whitepaper is focused o... More »

    Bi-Partisan Support Driving Solar Energy...
  • The Road To Change: Electric Vehicles Power the Future for Everyone By: Mark Victor Hansen, Founder and Co-creator, Chicken Soup for the Soul and Michael Gorton, Chief Executive Officer / Chairman, Principal Solar

    The EV industry is on the precipice of a significant growth spurt. New battery technologies coupled with innovations in the electric motor will drive this growth from inside the EV sector. Pressure from environmental groups, along with pricing, supply and demand of petroleum, will drive that growth from the traditional vehicle sector. The EV will prevail because it is already more efficient, cleaner and more durable than traditional transportation. Most importantly, within the next five years, the EV will likely reach a point where it is cheaper than the internal combustion engine. EVs operate for one-quarter the cost of gasoline cars, especi... More »

    The Road To Change: Electric Vehicles Po...
  • Investing in the Power of the Sun - The Capitalist Case for Solar Energy By: Michael Gorton, Chief Executive Officer / Chairman, Principal Solar and Dan Bedell, Executive Vice President - Marketing & Corporate Development, Principal Solar

    This paper examines the recent past and potential future of photovoltaic (PV) solar in terms of how it has compared with traditional generation and how, even without government subsidies, solar utility scale projects will reach a price per KWh that will be at - or less than - traditional generation, possibly as soon as 2014. Now is the time for traditional conservative thinking to re-examine the facts about solar energy and explore its potential for not only delivering more efficient and less costly power, but also for creating jobs and opportunities that jump-start economic growth. This jump-start would be possible because electricity drives... More »

    Investing in the Power of the Sun - The...
  • Solar Industry Goes Mainstream: Revolutionary PV Module Rating System Empowers Solar Professionals By: Ken Allen, COO, Principal Solar; Rick Borry, CTO, Principal Solar; Dan Bedell, Executive Vice President - Marketing & Corporate Development, Principal Solar; Kirk Blankenship, Institute Development, Principal Solar Institute; and Matthew Thompson, Executive Director, Principal Solar Institute

    The Principal Solar Institute (PSI) has launched the PSI PV Module Rating, the industry's first and only comprehensive, independent rating standard for comparing PV modules. The rating method is constructed without bias: PSI has no affiliation with any PV module manufacturer and no interest in promoting one over another. The ratings are designed to allow large-scale solar consumers to make informed, intelligent comparisons and decisions when selecting PV modules. The PSI PV Module Rating is a comparative number that can be used with pricing information to provide power plant designers, buyers and financiers with a consistent basis for choosin... More »

    Solar Industry Goes Mainstream: Revoluti...
  • Next Generation Vehicles: Addressing Air Quality, Fuel and Efficiency By: Margaret Keliher, Board of Directors, Principal Solar and Michael Gorton, Chief Executive Officer / Chairman, Principal Solar

    One hundred years ago, the automobile began showing up on the streets of our country. Many experts at the time opined that it was nothing more than a novelty. The horse, after all, had been the primary transportation source for thousands of years. Now, the car is mainstream and everything else is novelty - not to be taken seriously. The problem is that the internal combustion engine has not changed significantly since its introduction. It has been a great resource, yet it also has its weaknesses. The number one man-made contributor to dirty air is the automobile. Couple that with rising gas prices and national security issues associated with... More »

    Next Generation Vehicles: Addressing Air...
  • Feed-In Tariffs: The Proven Road Not Taken... Why Not? By: Peter Lynch, CEO, Salem Financial, Inc.

    Feed-in tariffs (FIT) are a policy mechanism designed to accelerate investment in renewable energy technologies. Producers of renewable energy are paid a set rate for the electricity they produce, usually differentiated according to the technology used (wind, solar, biomass, et.al.) and the size of the installation. Over the past decade, the FIT is credited for the rapid deployment of wind and solar power among world renewable energy leaders Denmark, Germany and Spain. This paper will examine the FIT within the context of real-world experiences, and make a case that the U.S. needs a nationwide FIT to kick-start the renewable energy industry,... More »

    Feed-In Tariffs: The Proven Road Not Tak...
  • Technological Niches: Concentrated Solar Thermal vs. Photovoltaic Solar By: Rick Borry, CTO, Principal Solar and Brett Gage, Research Intern, Principal Solar

    Concentrated solar thermal and photovoltaic solar technologies have evolved independently for decades, and both are approaching "grid-parity" power prices in many applications today. This paper will explore the different situations where each technology succeeds or fails in today's electric power generation marketplace, specifically excluding non-electric applications such as solar hot water heating. As of 2012, PV has come to dominate all smaller-scale solar electricity applications, while retaining the majority market share even in commercial and utility-scale applications. CSP retains a strong niche at the utility-scale and in combined hea... More »

    Technological Niches: Concentrated Solar...
  • Solutions for the Texas Energy Shortage By: Ron Seidel, Principal, RBS Energy Consulting

    In the summer of 2011, Texas experienced extremely low reserve margin periods throughout the state…causing average wholesale electricity prices to skyrocket to more than twice their normal level. Given that Texas is expected to add another 14 million to its population between 2010 and 2030,1 these shortages raise alarms about the state’s ability to meet future energy demand. Success will depend upon finding the most effective way to incent the development of more capacity. Unlike many other states, Texas has had a competitive retail market for electricity since 2001, replacing the traditional cost of a service-based regulated ma... More »

    Solutions for the Texas Energy Shortage
  • Navigating by the Sun: U.S. Department of Defense Takes Aggressive Lead as Early Adopters of Solar Energy By: Brig Gen (ret) Becky Halstead, CEO / Founder, STEADFAST Leadership and Michael Gorton, Chief Executive Officer / Chairman, Principal Solar

    The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) has a long-standing tradition of accelerating technological innovation, serving as early adopters and impacting the broader commercial market in such areas as aviation, computing and global positioning systems (GPS). For the past several years, the DoD has been playing this same role in the renewable energy space. In fact, The Pew Charitable Trusts reports that the DoD clean energy investments increased 300 percent between 2006 and 2009, from $400 million to $1.2 billion. Projections for 2030 are set to eclipse $10 billion annually,1 with an overall target of obtaining 25 percent of the DoD's energy from r... More »

    Navigating by the Sun: U.S. Department o...
  • Energy Efficiency & Sustainability in Organic Food Supply By: Jim Keyes, Chairman, Key Development LLC; Michael Martin, EVP, Business Development, Principal Solar; and Brett Gage, Research Intern, Principal Solar

    Over the past few decades, the organic food industry has gained increasing attention among various sectors of the population. Consumers and suppliers, alike, have facilitated this growth by appealing to a health and wellness conscience that grew out of the 20th century. With the growth of the organic food industry is a parallel trend of social responsibility showing that consumers across all sectors are not only demanding great products at affordable prices, but also understanding that their products were produced with minimal harm to the environment. Examining the food industry, ONE OF THE BIGGEST QUESTIONS presented to suppliers is how to b... More »

    Energy Efficiency & Sustainability i...
  • Interfacing with the Electrical Grid By: Ken Allen, COO, Principal Solar and Ron Seidel, Principal, RBS Energy Consulting

    "Interfacing with the Electrical Grid" outlines a new generation of power plants that will become increasingly dependent upon solar energy systems as a heat source, and the role federal, regional and state regulatory agencies will play in ensuring that connection, transmission and performance remains stable. More »

    Interfacing with the Electrical Grid
  • Navigating Environmental and Regulatory Issues to Reduce Risk By: Scott Deatherage, Partner, Gardere Wynne Sewell and Michael Gorton, Chief Executive Officer / Chairman, Principal Solar

    Understanding the full breadth of legal, regulatory and environmental issues associated with determining when and where to develop solar projects is critical to reducing risks and avoiding costly delays. "Solar Power Installations: Navigating Environmental Regulatory Issues to Reduce Risk" suggests the research, planning and design warranted to develop both private and public lands that will lead to the timely approval and construction of a project. More »

    Navigating Environmental and Regulatory...
  • Shining Light on Renewable Energy in Developing Countries By: Robert Freling, Executive Director, Solar Electric Light Fund and David Ramsour, Ph.D., Private Consultant, Researcher and Economist

    Many of the poorest countries in the world have the highest exposure to the sun. "Shining Light on Renewable Energy in Developing Countries" explores the opportunities for unprecedented investment in clean, renewable alternative energy systems that have the potential to not only enrich newly industrialized countries, but positively alter the quality of life for populations around the world. More »

    Shining Light on Renewable Energy in Dev...
  • Turning Green into Greener By: Wendell Brown, Inventor, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist and Michael Gorton, Chief Executive Officer / Chairman, Principal Solar

    This paper - which the authors nicknamed "Solar 101" - teaches the fundamentals of Solar energy. It is packed with current information and virtually everything you need to know about industry basics -- simplifying the complex science of solar energy and providing an understanding of grid parity. Discover how energy efficiency investments can provide up to one-half of the needed greenhouses gas emissions reductions most scientists say are needed between now and the year 2050. Such a gain in energy efficiency would mean reduced greenhouse gas emissions and lower energy bills for consumers and businesses alike. Readers will learn how power is pr... More »

    Turning Green into Greener
  • New PV and Natural Gas Electric Capacity - US

    This interesting graph shows the growth of utility-scale solar PV, as compared to natural gas. Download it now to see the details. You should also register for our free live/recoreded webinar: As Coal Dims, Will Solar Shine? Perspective on a Changing Electricity Industry Thursday, August 21, 2014 2:00pm - 3:00pm CDT More »

    New PV and Natural Gas Electric Capacity...
  • New PV compared to new coal plants in USA

    This graph dramatically shows the extinction of coal generation in the US. Solar continues to climb. Hear more about this at a free live/recorded webinar: As Coal Dims, Will Solar Shine? Perspective on a Changing Electricity Industry Feel free to download our analysis and use it in your presentations and discussions. More »

    New PV compared to new coal plants in US...
  • Texas and Germany: Energy Twins?

    There are surprising similarities in the way German and Texas think about their electricity markets. Both are fully deregulated and competitive. Both have large and growing amounts of wind and solar power. Both have economically-efficient “energy-only” markets, where power producers get paid for their energy, not for providing stand-by capacity. And both have questions about market structures and avoiding blackouts. Presented by The University of Texas Energy Institute, Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation, Heinrich Böll Foundation, and CleanTX. Click the download button for more information and to register for this live ev... More »

    Texas and Germany: Energy Twins?
  • Email signature logo

Introduction to PSI Ratings
August 31, 2012 10:44pm


U.S. EIA Forecast for Solar
May 25, 2014 9:37am


Webinar Slides: PACE Comes To Texas
September 26, 2013 4:12pm


Solar Calculators
May 1, 2014 9:47pm


2014 SPI Poster
October 20, 2014 8:25am


EIA-860 Instructions
August 19, 2014 1:47pm


EIA-860 Survey Form
August 19, 2014 1:51pm


Webinar Proposal Form
November 18, 2011 11:24am

News: Principal Solar Institute 
  • Advanced solar roof racking solutions mitigate PV system cost August 11, 2015 11:55pm

    Advanced solar roof racking solutions mitigate PV system cost: Photovoltaic solar rooftop installation raises a number of challenges that could slow widespread adoption among homeowners and businesses, including maintenance of roof water-tightness; roof warranty; continuous operation; aesthetics; stability; durability of materials; and high costs of labor. Authors: Matthew A. Thompson, Ph. D., Director of the Principal Solar Institute James R. Kirby, AIA, Vice President of Sustainability, Cent...
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  • Pedernales Electric Co-op Expands Use of Affordable Solar March 27, 2015 6:50pm

    Pedernales Electric Co-op Expands Use of Affordable Solar: Pedernales Electric Cooperative (PEC), the nation’s largest electric cooperative, which serves a large area to the west of Austin, has announced a plan to significantly expand investment in this clean, affordable energy source.The measures adopted will encourage development of both large- and small-scale renewable energy, primarily solar.  For large-scale developments, the co-op will work with its main power provider, the Lower Color...
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  • Georgetown, TX next in line to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy March 19, 2015 12:49pm

    Georgetown, TX next in line to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy: SunEdison will construct solar plants to provide the City of Georgetown with 150 megawatts (MW) of solar power for at least the next 25 years. According to the company, the plants are scheduled to be interconnected by 2016, and will provide more than 9,500 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of energy to the city – enough to power more than 24,000 homes until 2041.
    View this post

  • The Spill at Dan River December 8, 2014 7:30pm

    The Spill at Dan River: Lesley Stahl reports on how Duke Energy is handling over 100 million tons of coal ash waste in North Carolina I grew up in South Carolina with Duke as my utility and my impression was that they are well admired as a utility, community citizen, and employer.  But they clearly could do better with coal ash, and I think that solar will be part of their solution. They did a good job today of providing more information to those who want to solve the problem, and not just ye...
    View this post

  • A Deeper Look into Yieldco Structuring October 7, 2014 10:25am

    A Deeper Look into Yieldco Structuring: Yieldcos seem to be the renewable energy financing mechanism in vogue lately. As the newest 2014 headliners, TerraForm Power and NextEra Energy attract media attention, and NRG Yield continues to exceed expectations, many industry stakeholders are asking: what is a yieldco and why is it attractive from an investment and finance perspective?
    View this post

  • SEIA calls for investment tax credit rethink March 28, 2014 11:29am

    SEIA calls for investment tax credit rethink: The Obama administrations budget proposal allows the U.S. Investment Tax Credit (ITC) to expire on December 31, 2016.  The 30% ITC will be replaced with a Production Tax Credit (PTC) equivalent to $0.022/kWh. Fuel cell and small wind project investors will also lose out on the 30% tax redemption offered by the ITC with geothermal, microturbines and combined heat and power projects set to lose a 10% allowance under the credit, at the end of 2016. U...
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