Shine On
May 9, 2018

California is poised to capitalize on its status as one of the nation's sunniest states.

All California homes built in 2020 or later will have solar panels, The Wall Street Journal reports, following a mandate passed by the California Energy Commission on Wednesday.

Lawmakers voted 5-0 to approve the measure, requiring new developments to install panels to provide renewable energy for the building. The rule will apply to residential buildings up to three stories high. The measure will cost an additional $9,500 in construction costs per home, on average, but experts told the Journal that it would help drive down the cost of solar energy and revive the downtrodden solar industry, which was hit by solar panel tariffs earlier this year. Around 20 percent of single-family homes in California already use solar energy, more than any other state.

The Golden State has taken some of the most aggressive measures in promoting energy efficiency, often butting heads with President Trump's administration over emissions standards and renewable energy policies. Read more at The Wall Street Journal. Summer Meza

October 20, 2017

Starwatchers are saying that this year's Orionid meteor shower, which will be at peak visibility this weekend, is set to be particularly dazzling because it'll coincide with low levels of moonlight. The Orionids are actually left-behind fragments of Halley's Comet, which won't be visible from Earth until 2061 (its last appearance was in 1986).

Viewers in the eastern and southwestern U.S. will have the clearest skies for meteor-watching; between midnight and dawn is when the meteors will be flying the fastest. EarthSky estimates that people living in places with low light pollution could see up to 10 to 15 meteors per hour, as the Orionid meteor shower is one of the fastest and brightest we can see from Earth because its trajectory hits the planet almost head-on. Fortunately for us, the meteors are small enough that they burn up in Earth's atmosphere before they can make contact with ground. The Week Staff

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