Earlier this month, PNM, New Mexico’s largest electricity provider, proposed a distributed solar generation fee that could cost new solar installers $30 a month to connect to the grid. PNM considers the fee to be part of a greater “fairness issue” in which customers with rooftop solar systems aren’t paying their share of the fixed costs needed to maintain power lines and other elements of the grid.
“With solar customers who don’t use a lot of energy, other customers are actually picking up a greater piece of the cost,” Susan Snyder Sponar, senior communications representative at PNM, told ThinkProgress. Sponar said that most of the costs for maintaining their grid are not in fixed customer charges, but in energy charges. Since solar customers are generating a lot of their own energy, they aren’t paying the full cost of keeping the grid at the ready. [Read more]
– http://wp.me/p4sUqu-12c – Michael’s Blog
The cost of solar power plus battery storage is about to dip below the average electricity bill in Germany.
That’s the word from a new analysis by the global investment bank HSBC, which projects that the dropping price of home solar arrays combined with home battery storage is about to massively disrupt traditional fossil fuel electricity generation. According to a report by RenewEconomy, which got a look at the analysis, HSBC took a look at the situation in Germany, and concluded that power generation units with a capacity of 10 megawatts or less will make up 50 percent of the country’s power by 2025 — up from 30 percent now. “The process of re-localisation of power production appears unstoppable,” HSBC says in its paper. [Read more]
– http://wp.me/p4sUqu-J9 – Michael’s Blog
According to new numbers released by the Chinese government, China added 3.3 gigawatts of solar capacity in the first six months of the year ending June 30, marking a 100 percent increase over the same period last year. That brings China’s total solar supply to 23 gigawatts — 13 shy of the country’s goal of installing 35 by the end of 2015. In 2013 China installed around 11.3 gigawatts of solar, representing 37 percent of global growth, and the bulk of this year’s installations will come in the second half of the year. The agency vows to install 13 gigawatts of solar power capacity this year, which would mean an average of more than one gigawatt a month for the rest of the year — an amount equatable to South Korea’s total installed capacity as of 2013. [Read more]
– http://wp.me/p4sUqu-qb – Michael’s Blog
The largest solar power plant of its kind is about to turn on in California’s Mojave Desert.
The will power about 140,000 homes and will be a boon to the state’s renewable energy goals, but it was no slam dunk. Now, California is trying to bring conservationists and energy companies together to create a smoother path for future projects. [Read the full article]