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1 Skip Intro  Fri, Jan 11, 2013 3:48:17pm

Solar is about to get more expensive in the US because electricity providers are demanding solar customers pay a larger fee to access the grid. As of now, utilities, at least in California, have to buy excess solar power at the price they pay for other energy. In some cases, people with large arrays are able to sell back as much or more energy than they buy, effectively paying nothing to support the electric grid infrastructure. This is about to change, either by reducing the buy back rate, charging an infrastructure fee, or both.
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2 Achilles Tang  Fri, Jan 11, 2013 7:35:53pm

re: #1 Skip Intro

While I would agree that there should be some margin for infrastructure cost when selling back power (although I think very few do that; mostly they just reduce their bill), the other side of the coin is that the utility gets that power without any capital or fuel cost to themselves, thereby (if enough people do it) reducing the generating load and cost on the utility.

As to Germany, I think they have much more residential solar power than the USA and are simply more efficient, and have better, stable, subsidies for it; meaning that those companies are simply more efficient. My experience in the USA is that most installers are small operators, mostly marketing government subsidies. The larger firms simply don’t mess with residential installations, or just pay them lip service, and there is the resistance from utilities who are always behind the curve and mostly interested in their regional monopoly.

3 Kdizzle  Sat, Jan 12, 2013 11:34:15am

Because its much more organized than most other nations photo-voltaic cells, and much much more disciplined.

4 Achilles Tang  Sat, Jan 12, 2013 6:41:56pm

re: #3 Kdizzle

Because its much more organized than most other nations photo-voltaic cells, and much much more disciplined.

And more rational. My point being that private industry in the USA has no goal other than their short term profit. Germany has a long term policy to have 20% of their energy in renewable form by 2020, if I recall. In the USA this is is socialism and dirty energy.


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