The idea of harnessing solar power from space has been around for a while; Asimov included it in at least two of his stories that I remember—but may finally be a reality come 2016.
PG&E, the state's largest power utility (and the one who gets my money every month), just signed a deal to get solar space power from Solaren.
The plan is to have solar panels collect the energy in space, shoot it down via RF transmissions, and convert that into usable electricity.
There's no risk to PG&E because they're not investing anything into the company, just agreeing to buy power at a certain rate if the space power does come through by 2016. [MSNBC]