Photovoltaics

Can anyone spot the problem with this picture?

Only the Greens would promote this…in this way.

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Green energy bludgers put their hand out for more corporate welfare

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As if blinding pilots and frying bird life isn’t enough the corporate bludgers who built the solar plant at Ivanpah with a cheap Federal loan are now trying to line up a Federal grant to pay off the Federal loan.

There is literally nowhere in the world where these green energy projects can survive without running to the government to?be bailed out with loans or subsidies or grants.

Worse still the plant is owned by Google…who have more money than a bull can poop…I suggest they cough for their stupid project themselves.

After already receiving a controversial $1.6 billion construction loan from U.S. taxpayers, the wealthy investors of a California solar power plant now want a $539 million federal grant to pay off their federal loan.

“This is an attempt by very large cash generating companies that have billions on their balance sheet to get a federal bailout, i.e. a bailout from us – the taxpayer for their pet project,” said Reason Foundation VP of Research Julian Morris. “It’s actually rather obscene.”

The Ivanpah solar electric generating plant is owned by Google and renewable energy giant NRG, which are responsible for paying off their federal loan. If approved by the U.S. Treasury, the two corporations will not use their own money, but taxpayer cash to pay off 30 percent of the cost of their plant, but taxpayers will receive none of the millions in revenues the plant will generate over the next 30 years.

“They’re already paying less than the market rate,” said Morris, author of a lengthy report detailing alleged cronyism and corruption in the Obama administration’s green energy programs. “Now demanding or asking for a subsidy in the form of a grant directly paying off the loan is an egregious abuse.”

NRG doesn’t see it that way, telling Fox News the money is there for the taking.”NRG believes in a clean and sustainable energy future and therefore participates in available government programs to develop and expand the use of clean energy to accelerate America?s energy independence.” In 2013, the Obama administration handed out $18.5 billion in renewable energy grants, with $4.4 billion going to solar projects.

Ivanpah is the largest concentrated solar power plant in the world. It was unveiled in February with great fanfare. Dr. Ernest Moniz, the U.S. Secretary of Energy, justified taxpayers’ investment at the time, saying, “We want to be technology leaders. It’s good for our economy and it?s also good for helping stimulate the global transition to low carbon.”

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Solar isn’t cheaper, or more effective, learn from Germany’s mistakes

The Green party wants to foist an energy policy upon New Zealand that is idiocy in the extreme. Industry sources say it is a hopelessly flawed policy, reliant on subsidies to work and even then it is based on a lie…that solar is cheap and effective.

Germany’s problems suggest the opposite.

Germany once prided itself on being the ?photovoltaic world champion?, doling out generous subsidies?totaling more than $130 billion, according to research from Germany?s Ruhr University?to citizens to invest in solar energy. But now the German government is vowing to cut the subsidies sooner than planned and to phase out support over the next five years. What went wrong?

Subsidizing green technology is affordable only if it is done in tiny, tokenistic amounts. Using the government?s generous subsidies, Germans installed 7.5 gigawatts of photovoltaic capacity last year, more than double what the government had deemed ?acceptable.? It is estimated that this increase alone will lead to a $260 hike in the average consumer?s annual power bill.

According to?Der Spiegel,?even members of Chancellor Angela Merkel?s staff are now describing the policy as a massive money pit. Philipp R?sler, Germany?s minister of economics and technology, has called the spiraling solar subsidies a ?threat to the economy.?

Germany?s enthusiasm for solar power is understandable. We could satisfy all of the world?s energy needs for an entire year if we could capture just one hour of the sun?s energy. Even with the inefficiency of current PV technology, we could meet the entire globe?s energy demand with solar panels by covering 250,000 square kilometers (155,342 square miles), about 2.6 percent of the Sahara Desert.? Read more »

More problems for the Green’s solar policy

The Green’s solar policy is reliant on subsidies…and as we know subsidies always blow out massively.

If you want to know how massively we only need look at a couple of examples…like Germany where the government is now faced with having to curtail the subsidies.

Two interesting stories that show, at least to me they do, that the subsidies offered to solar power were simply too large and too fast. The first is from Germany, where it looks like the European Union is going to take a very large bite out of a number of large companies. The second is from the US, where there?s a disturbing trend of solar cells failing after only a couple of years in the field.

Germany first: the basic story is that Germany has offered some of the world?s highest subsidies for solar PV installation. I work part of the time in eastern Germany and the place is festooned with them: in one of the climates least able to make efficient use of the technology. The method was that those installing PV were offered high and guaranteed rates for the electricity produced. These were paid for by inflating the electricity bills of users. The problem is that large industrial users simply could afford these rates (more like 28 euro cents per unit than the 10 US cents an American company might pay) for energy intensive processes. So, the German government created a system of opts out for large energy users: they would have to pay that extra to subsidise the solar installations.

That?s ludicrous, of course. You want all energy users to be paying for the installation of a new energy system (even if it is one as badly thought out as solar in Germany).

Germany is a silly place to push solar…I would have thought that New Zealand was too…given Aotearoa means “Land of the long white cloud”.

The other story comes from the US. It?s about the very shoddy quality of some of the solar panels that have?been installed:

All solar panels degrade and gradually generate less electricity over time. But a review of 30,000 installations in Europe by the German solar monitoring firm Meteocontrol found 80 percent were underperforming. Testing of six manufacturers? solar panels at two Spanish power plants by Enertis Solar in 2010 found defect rates as high as 34.5 percent.

The story here can be read two ways. There?s a lot of blaming Chinese companies in which case we might read it as just softening up people for the tariffs to be imposed upon Chinese solar panels. But this report is in the New York Times so it obviously couldn?t be something that politically nefarious. The other way is that shoddy production is an inevitable outcome of an industry expanding pell mell. Which would be an indication that we?re just trying to do this switch over to solar too fast. Which in itself would be an indication that we?ve set those subsidies too high: and also that it?s going to cost us a lot more than previously thought to replace those shoddily made components.

Green solar nonsense vs fact

Has Russel Norman even bothered to read the EECA (Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority) website?or the Consumer report on solar power from November last year? ? ?As usual the Greens are living in an environmentally friendly la-la land and completely ignorant of reality and actual proper research.

According to their “Solar Homes” report,?they are planning to have people install grid connected systems:

“once the low-interest loan is repaid, the?family will own their solar power system?outright. Families will be able to earn money?by?selling excess electricity back to the grid.”

Here is what our very own government funded bodies EECA and Consumer Affairs have to say after doing a LOT of research on grid connected systems:

From EECA:

If you are thinking about a grid connected system to reduce your energy bills, then it is important you understand the economics of the systems you are looking at. Even if a PV system proves marginally viable, there are?many better ways to reduce your energy costs.

In many cases setting up and using your own grid-connected generation system will cost you more than using grid electricity over the lifespan of the system. It is also worth knowing why most of the other benefits that are often associated with grid connected systems overseas don’t apply here in New Zealand.

As you will generally be selling excess electricity for significantly less than the retail price, most grid-connected systems will?never pay themselves off, let alone reduce your energy bills, or make you money.?? Read more »

Even the Germans got burned by green energy

Germans are usually much more cunning with their money, but they got sucked in by the green economy scams:

Germany once prided itself on being the ?photovoltaic world champion?, doling out generous subsidies?totaling more than $130 billion, according to research from Germany?s Ruhr University?to citizens to invest in solar energy. But now the German government is vowing to cut the subsidies sooner than planned and to phase out support over the next five years. What went wrong?

Subsidizing green technology is affordable only if it is done in tiny, tokenistic amounts. Using the government?s generous subsidies, Germans installed 7.5 gigawatts of photovoltaic capacity last year, more than double what the government had deemed ?acceptable.? It is estimated that this increase alone will lead to a $260 hike in the average consumer?s annual power bill.

According to?Der Spiegel,?even members of Chancellor Angela Merkel?s staff are now describing the policy as a massive money pit. Philipp R?sler, Germany?s minister of economics and technology, has called the spiraling solar subsidies a ?threat to the economy.?

Germany?s enthusiasm for solar power is understandable. We could satisfy all of the world?s energy needs for an entire year if we could capture just one hour of the sun?s energy. Even with the inefficiency of current PV technology, we could meet the entire globe?s energy demand with solar panels by covering 250,000 square kilometers (155,342 square miles), about 2.6 percent of the Sahara Desert.

Unfortunately, Germany?like most of the world?is not as sunny as the Sahara. And, while sunlight is free, panels and installation are not. Solar power is at least four times more costly than energy produced by fossil fuels. It also has the distinct disadvantage of not working at night, when much electricity is consumed.

Great, they put in alternate energy systems and their power prices is skyrocketing…I guess it could be worse they could have put in a RMA and hamstrung new generation capacity for decades.

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