As solar panel prices “dropped like a rock,” AllEarth Renewables CEO David Blittersdorf shifted his company’s focus from home wind turbines to the AllSun Tracker, a dual-axis solar tracker. “You need to be flexible and operate with speed,” the 30-year veteran of renewable energy says in this Wind Talk podcast.
Blittersdorf also discusses his Vermont-based company and the challenges it faces in regard to anti-wind legislation filtering through the state legislature. Studies show that just 10 to 15% of Vermont residents are opposed to wind energy, Blittersdorf says, yet well-funded and vocal NIMBY groups have put all renewable energy development in the state at risk, despite Vermont having very progressive renewable energy policies.
The CEO also talks about the federal budget cuts known as the sequester, which impact 1603 grants for solar installations. “We’ve decided to not start construction on projects until we have something out of Washington. Right now, everyone is running around saying, ‘Are they going to do anything?’”
Blittersdorf, the former CEO of NRG Systems, a leader in wind measurement devices, also touches on the challenges small wind faces and how it compares to solar. “Wind is sort of the step-child in the small renewables business,” at least in the Northeast, he says.