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  •  The Incredible Shrinking Cost of Solar Energy (28+ / 0-)

    The Incredible Shrinking Cost of Solar Energy Drives Mega-Projects around the World

    Rob Wile uses a graph to point out the obvious, the dramatic fall in the cost of solar power generation. In many countries– Italy, Spain, Germany, Portugal — and in parts of the US such as the Southwest, solar is at grid parity. That means it is as inexpensive to build a solar plant as a gas or coal one. The pace of technological innovation in the solar field has also accelerated, so that costs have started falling precipitously and efficiency is rapidly increasing. By 2015, solar panels should have fallen to 42 cents per watt. Reneweconomy.com says that the best Chinese solar panels fell in cost by 50% between 2009 and 2012. That incredible achievement is what has driven so many solar companies bankrupt– if you have the older technology, your panels are suddenly expensive and you can’t compete. It is like no one wants a 4 year old computer. Conservatives shed no tears when better computers drive slower ones out of the market, but point to solar companies’ shake-out as somehow bad or unnatural. No wonder US solar installations jumped 76% in 2012. The reductions in cost over the next two years are expected to continue, at a slowing but still impressive 30% rate
    •  Great news, thanks for the info (1+ / 0-)
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      Don midwest

      Move Single Payer Forward? Join 18,000 Doctors of PNHP and 185,000 member National Nurses United

      by divineorder on Wed Jun 12, 2013 at 08:58:31 PM PDT

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    •  I'm afraid these numbers might be off. (1+ / 0-)
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      KenBee

      That's the problem with solar these days - everything is changing so fast.

      Best wholesale, container sized prices we've seen already were .48/w (which was fantastic!), but my suppliers just informed us prices are on the rise again. Causes? Shrinkage of some manufacturers (yes, even Chinese companies fail when their product is being given away), vast increase of purchasing by Japan (!!), EU new tariff battle.

      We've been told to expect 15% higher prices and tighter availability by September.

      Not to say that PV in general will not continue to moderate or shrink - the big focus right now is racking and other BOS innovations.

      "Only a Vulcan mind meld will help with this congress." Leonard Nimoy, 3/1/13

      by nzanne on Thu Jun 13, 2013 at 06:56:06 AM PDT

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