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  • Solar Eclipse

    Something of a puff piece on what will happen when the eclipse occurs, but there are enough nuggets in there I hadn't seen before that I thought I'd post it. Go easy on me.

    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features...r-electricity/


    If you make it into the comments... Andrew Lang would probably feel at home in this forum.
    CS6P-260P/SE3000 - http://tiny.cc/ed5ozx

  • #2
    Originally posted by sensij View Post
    Something of a puff piece on what will happen when the eclipse occurs, but there are enough nuggets in there I hadn't seen before that I thought I'd post it. Go easy on me.

    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features...r-electricity/


    If you make it into the comments... Andrew Lang would probably feel at home in this forum.
    all it boils down to simple fact that solar is expensive and required battery technology is even more expensive. Good news they're both within 1 order of magnitude from being economically viable so who knows if we cut the BS and turn to actual research some technology might emerge at the end.

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    • #3
      Solar is currently very economically viable here in SA, I heard the other day that we now have the highest electricity prices in the world, dont know how we managed to beat Hawaii, its very bad for our economy but great for solar companies

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by solar pete View Post
        Solar is currently very economically viable here in SA, I heard the other day that we now have the highest electricity prices in the world, dont know how we managed to beat Hawaii, its very bad for our economy but great for solar companies
        That is sad to hear. Any idea why your electric rates have gone up so much?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by sensij View Post
          Something of a puff piece on what will happen when the eclipse occurs, but there are enough nuggets in there I hadn't seen before that I thought I'd post it. Go easy on me.

          https://fivethirtyeight.com/features...r-electricity/


          If you make it into the comments... Andrew Lang would probably feel at home in this forum.
          Based on the current low % of solar being used to generate power in the US this solar eclipse will easily be handled by the high reserve power generation already in place.

          But on the side of caution, as the POCO's continue to shut down old fossil fuel and nuclear power generation and people continue to increase the % and rely more on RE there could be a tipping point where reserve power generation would be stressed to back up the lose of solar during another eclipse.

          It is hard to say where that break point is but my fear is it will be crossed and any natural weather or solar event would end up with black outs for some people.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by SunEagle View Post

            That is sad to hear. Any idea why your electric rates have gone up so much?
            Yep politicians are idiots

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            • #7
              Originally posted by solar pete View Post
              Solar is currently very economically viable here in SA, I heard the other day that we now have the highest electricity prices in the world, dont know how we managed to beat Hawaii, its very bad for our economy but great for solar companies
              I'd keep in mind that economically viable does not mean universally practical or necessarily inexpensive, just perhaps not as costly as the most expensive option that is viewed as economically viable.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by solar pete View Post
                Solar is currently very economically viable here in SA, I heard the other day that we now have the highest electricity prices in the world, dont know how we managed to beat Hawaii, its very bad for our economy but great for solar companies
                or that- if the costs can't be brought down just jack up prices screwing the rest of economy over. Looks like that approach is gaining popularity nowadays.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by max2k View Post

                  or that- if the costs can't be brought down just jack up prices screwing the rest of economy over. Looks like that approach is gaining popularity nowadays.
                  It worked in Germany. Or maybe it didn't. From what I have read as they installed more RE their electric rates tripled.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by SunEagle View Post

                    It worked in Germany. Or maybe it didn't. From what I have read as they installed more RE their electric rates tripled.
                    The German and Spanish experiments to encourage PV installation (as well as other RE) was an exercise in how encourage PV while nearly bankrupting the economies. There are financial wizards that are always roaming around looking for a good way to make money especially long term government backed money. In Germany's case the incentive program offered long term guaranteed production incentives for the purchase of RE power well above market rates. Therefore these wizards figured out a way of installing lots of PV quickly before the government figured out the long term impact of the generous subsidy. Germany did reign back on PV when the long term budget impact was calculated but Spain's approach was to retroactively cut all incentives even though they were "guaranteed" by the government.

                    I have worked with a few developers tied in with RE deals, they may talk "green" in public but in private the only green they are concerned about is the cash they get in their pocket before the incentive well runs dry. Up front incentives are fine for "priming the pump" for new technology but it rapidly can transition to a subsidy. The poster child for this is ethanol production that eventually turned into a huge farm subsidy funded by consumers who have to buy ethanol blends. I think PV crossed the line when panels dropped below a buck a watt and wind has long since crossed the line.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by peakbagger View Post

                      The German and Spanish experiments to encourage PV installation (as well as other RE) was an exercise in how encourage PV while nearly bankrupting the economies. There are financial wizards that are always roaming around looking for a good way to make money especially long term government backed money. In Germany's case the incentive program offered long term guaranteed production incentives for the purchase of RE power well above market rates. Therefore these wizards figured out a way of installing lots of PV quickly before the government figured out the long term impact of the generous subsidy. Germany did reign back on PV when the long term budget impact was calculated but Spain's approach was to retroactively cut all incentives even though they were "guaranteed" by the government.

                      I have worked with a few developers tied in with RE deals, they may talk "green" in public but in private the only green they are concerned about is the cash they get in their pocket before the incentive well runs dry. Up front incentives are fine for "priming the pump" for new technology but it rapidly can transition to a subsidy. The poster child for this is ethanol production that eventually turned into a huge farm subsidy funded by consumers who have to buy ethanol blends. I think PV crossed the line when panels dropped below a buck a watt and wind has long since crossed the line.
                      While I applaud a large organization trying to increase the exposure to new RE technology I cringe at how it was implemented in Germany since IMO it just raised the POCO electric rates very quickly and hurt the consumers. Also without a guaranteed way to provide power at night it puts them in the need to import power from other countries. That is not a good plan

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                      • #12
                        Norway and Finland love the situation, they have some large pumped storage facilities that act as grid batteries and change accordingly for the service.

                        Southern New England has been doing similar things, shutting down base load power plants, heavily subsidizing PV and buying mostly intermittent wind and buying lots of peakers. Next idiocy is pay Canada to build hydro stations and run long vulnerable power lines very long distances to feed the gird.

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