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Really, Really Astonishingly Low Distributed Solar PV Prices from German Solar Policy

| Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Apr 27, 2011 The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at

Last week I shared a graphic illustrating the dramatic fall in distributed solar PV prices in Germany, down to $4.11 per Watt installed, for rooftop systems under 100 kilowatts.  As it turns out, the graphic was out-of-date.  In Germany, the average installed cost for rooftop solar PV under 100 kW is $3.70 per Watt (update 7/13/11: $3.40 per Watt).  It’s a 50% drop in price since 2006, an average of 13% per year.

For comparison (as in the first post), here’s the average installed cost for under 10 kW rooftop solar PV in the United States, by state.

Chart is from page 19 of the brilliant report, Tracking the Sun III: The Installed Cost of Photovoltaics in the U.S. from 1998-2009 (large pdf).

Also from the previous post:

Did I also mention that the German policy (a feed-in tariff) driving solar costs down only costs German ratepayers the equivalent of a loaf of bread per month?  In the U.S., the federal renewable energy incentives cost $4 billion in 2007, or about $3.17 per household per month (or about the same price as an Italian baguette).

There’s only way to describe this German success: wunderbar!

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About John Farrell

John Farrell directs the Energy Democracy initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance and he develops tools that allow communities to take charge of their energy future, and pursue the maximum economic benefits of the transition to 100% renewable power. More

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