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View Diary: You Think It's Hot Now? Wait for Thermogeddon (218 comments)

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  •  Germany is buying power from other EU... (0+ / 0-)

    ...countries, which means eaither fossil fuel is being used, or nuclear power. Just pulling the plug on your nuclear plants without having alternatives up and running is foolish.

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 12:49:51 AM PDT

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    •  No, but... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      xaxnar

      ...it gives you incentives to get the alternatives scaled up and deployed all that much faster.  Which is exactly what Germany is doing, and why it's a global leader in solar research and production.

      Solidarity: The GOP inadvertently lit the fire in Madison, and we must now carry the torch, for as long as it takes.

      by Richard Cranium on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 05:25:24 AM PDT

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      •  AND in policies (tax, etc.) that promote solar (0+ / 0-)

        "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

        by xaxnar on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 08:01:32 AM PDT

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        •  I'm dubious. YMMV. n/t (0+ / 0-)

          Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

          by JeffW on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 10:40:27 AM PDT

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          •  Make it pay, it attracts investment/development (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            JeffW

            Government policies make a big difference in Germany.

            Last year in April [2008], the Social-Democratic/Green German government introduced the Renewable Energy Act (EEG) to boost the planned switch to renewable energy sources. Producers of renewable energy get 43 cents for each kWh (kilowatt per hour) of solar power generated and 7 cents per kWh of wind energy generated.
            Since June, even producers of biomass energy -- usually "waste products" from farms like grass and wood -- are allowed to sell up to 9 cents per kWh of generated energy.
            "The beauty of this law is that costs of these incentives are not tied to any budget, but distributed and added to regular power prices," explained Uwe Hartmann, vice president of DGS, the German section of the International Solar Energy Society (ISES).
            "Consumers feel such an increase of maybe a tenth of a cent at most as white noise, but it really helped to start the boom," added Hartmann.
            Another program, initiated by the German government is also gaining momentum: the "100,000 roofs" initiative. Consumers get low-interest credits to finance solar panels for their roofs. By 2003, Germany intends to have given subsidies to more than 100,000 private homes with photovoltaic systems.
            The initiative had a slow start, but not due to any lack of interest on the part of consumers.
            "More than 10,000 customers already registered before the start of the initiative. The government was completely overwhelmed by this response and had to stop the initiative for about three months," said Hartmann. In 2001 alone, solar systems with a total power capacity of 65 megawatts will be subsidized.

            You can argue that Germany is using tax money and a shift in energy pricing to pick winners and losers - or you can argue that Germany is using tax money and a shift in energy pricing to move away from energy sources that have huge financial costs in terms of health and environmental damage that produce a net gain for society when ALL the costs are totted up.

            "No special skill, no standard attitude, no technology, and no organization - no matter how valuable - can safely replace thought itself."

            by xaxnar on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 11:33:03 AM PDT

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