While California lumbers forward with a high-cost, controversial solar strategy built around remote utility-scale solar thermal plants, with the hope that 10,000 megawatts can be built in ten years, Germany is demonstrating now that 10,000 megawatts of distributed PV can be added in only three years.
Viewing all content from John Farrell Page 36 of 72
About John Farrell
John Farrell directs the Energy Self-Reliant States and Communities program at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance and he focuses on energy policy developments that best expand the benefits of local ownership and dispersed generation of renewable energy. More
Updated 1/28/11: Talk about distributed generation! In Germany in 2009, nearly 1 in 5 solar PV systems went on residential rooftops and 60% was installed on small to medium residential or commercial buildings.
The absolute numbers are big, too. Germany installed nearly 9 gigawatts installed 3 gigawatts of solar in 2009, to reach 9 gigawatts of installed capacity.
The blog Camino Energy has a very detailed analysis of the payback on an electric vehicle (Nissan Leaf) compared to a conventional Toyota Camry. The author looks specifically at Northern California, where off-peak electricity prices are low enough that utilities could offer electric vehicle (EV) charging at 5 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh). At that rate, with solely night-time charging of the EV and driving 12,000 miles a year, a Nissan Leaf pays back in 5 years.
The author provides a sensitivity analysis against higher electricity prices, and his entire post is worth reading.
Joining Ontario and several U.S. states, the Canadian province of Nova Scotia has proposed a new twist on a common clean energy program. The policy provides a guaranteed, long-term contract for wind, biomass, hydro, and tidal power producers and offers them the same return on equity provided to utiltiies. Continue reading
The country of Turkey recently adopted a new feed-in tariff policy for several renewable energy technologies including wind and solar. What’s notable is not the base rates (the prices are likely too low) but the bonus payments for “made in Turkey” projects. For a solar PV project, for example, a fully local solar PV system could increase their payment per kilowatt-hour by over 50%.
The policy mimics the highly successful FIT Program in Ontario, where a buy local rule requires participating projects to source at least 60% of their content in the province. The rule has meant that the 5,000 megawatts of projects in the pipeline have generated the promise of 43,000 jobs. For more on Ontario’s program, see our recently released report: Maximizing Jobs From Clean Energy: Ontario’s ‘Buy Local’ Policy.
Turkey’s policy is noteworthy for using bonus payments, a strategy that is more likely to pass legal muster for U.S. states looking to emulate Ontario’s job creation success.
An incredibly thorough, annual analysis of the U.S. wind market. A must-read for anyone doing analysis of wind power data in the United States. The authors even provide their data file. Download the report. From the Executive Summary: Wind Power Additions in 2009 Shattered Old Records, with roughly 10 GW of New Capacity Added in… Continue reading
We put out the new report, Maximizing Jobs From Clean Energy: Ontario’s ‘Buy Local’ Policy, this week and now you can watch an interview of my explanation of the report’s findings on Etopia News.