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Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 5 Comments | Updated on Sep 20, 2012

Why Are Residential PV Prices in Germany So Much Lower Than in the United States?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/residential-pv-prices-germany-united-states/

Earlier this week, Lawrence Berkeley Labs released a marvelous comparison of residential PV costs in Germany and the United States, finally putting some detail to an enormous gulf in costs (nearly $3.00 per Watt).  The following chart (from page 35 of the presentation) shows the cost difference broken down into 9 categories, with ILSR’s addition… Continue reading

Featured Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 7 Comments | Updated on Jul 10, 2012

Why We Pay Double for Solar in America (But Won’t Forever)

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/why-pay-double-solar-america/

Update 12/21/12: Corrected chart.  Overhead and Sales Tax had been switched in the German data column. I often get flak when I publish research on the cost trajectory for solar (e.g. my Rooftop Revolution report estimates 100 million Americans reaching grid parity by 2021).  About half think I’m too conservative, and half think I’m too… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 5 Comments | Updated on May 11, 2012

Could the U.S. Cut Household Electricity Use by Two-Thirds?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/u-s-cut-household-electricity-two-thirds/

Your mind-blowing chart of the day, courtesy of Arne Jungjohann at the Heinrich Böll Foundation. Source for U.S. use; source for German use; used U.S. average household size of 2.6. Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 7 Comments | Updated on May 4, 2012

Who Has the Most Cost-Effective Solar Feed-in Tariff?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/cost-effective-solar-feed-in-tariff/

In a forthcoming report on U.S. feed-in tariff programs, I’ll provide a comparison of solar feed-in tariff (FIT, a.k.a. CLEAN Contract) rates across the United States. Comparing published rates is not particularly helpful, however, because contract lengths vary (from 15 to 25 years) and the solar resource also varies widely.  For international comparisons (e.g. Germany), it’s… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 3 Comments | Updated on Apr 4, 2012

Lots of Solar Power May Reduce, Not Increase, Electricity Prices

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/lots-solar-power-reduce-increase-electricity-prices/

Whether German feed-in tariffs or U.S. tax incentives, opponents of solar rail at its perceived high cost. But a story making rounds this week, “why power generators are terrified of solar,” presents a powerful image that may flip this conventional wisdom on its head. Building lots of solar power can actually reduce electricity prices, to… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Mar 23, 2012

Ontario Feed-in Tariff Prices Drop, Germans Still Far Cheaper

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/ontario-feed-in-tariff-prices-drop-germans-cheaper/

Ontario just completed a revision of their landmark feed-in tariff program and rates for renewable electricity generation and prices fell sharply: 30% for solar and 15% for wind power. This continues a trend of falling costs for renewable energy around the world. As a bit of background, Ontario’s feed-in tariff gives wind and solar producers… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Feb 23, 2012

German Policy Could Make Solar in America “Wunderbar”

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/german-policy-solar-america-wunderbar/

This post was originally titled Residential Solar for $2.24 per Watt in Germany? The Germans are debating significant revisions to their landmark renewable energy policy, and instead of declaring the death of the German solar market, Americans should focus on why solar still costs so much on this side of the Atlantic. After a significant… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Feb 23, 2012

Residential Solar for $2.24 per Watt in Germany?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/residential-solar-2-24-watt-germany/

The Germans have proposed significant revisions to their landmark renewable energy policy, the feed-in tariff, and the proposed prices should make Americans wonder why solar still costs so much on this side of the Atlantic. After a significant step-down in March, German utilities will be buying rooftop solar on long-term contracts from projects 10 kilowatts… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 1 Comment | Updated on Feb 2, 2012

How Distributed Solar Can Reduce Electricity Prices

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/how-distributed-solar-can-reduce-electricity-prices/

What if installing more solar could reduce electricity prices? It’s already happening in Germany, world leader in solar power, and it’s likely to happen in the U.S., too. Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 1 Comment | Updated on Jan 11, 2012

Democratic energy policy means strong public support for renewables

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/democratic-energy-policy-means-strong-public-support-renewables/

Conducted by market research institute Forsa on behalf of municipal utilities in Germany, the survey found that 61 percent of Germans are willing to pay more for their power if the extra cost helps ramp up the share of renewables. Public acceptance even extends to acceptance of wind turbines “in my backyard”; 54 percent of those surveyed said they would find it “good” or “very good” if a wind turbine were set up nearby.

That’s the German feed-in tariff at work…

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