Support the Arctic Sea Ice Forum and Blog

Author Topic: Renewable Energy  (Read 842340 times)

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1250 on: April 28, 2016, 08:12:28 PM »
I Was Wrong About the Limits of Solar, PV Is Becoming Dirt Cheap.
Quote
The price of solar power is falling faster than many thought was possible. Harvard’s David Keith comes honest with us about solar power: “Facts have changed. I was wrong.”

The unsubsidized electricity cost from industrial-scale solar PV in the most favorable locations is now well below $40 per megawatt-hour and could very easily be below $20 per megawatt-hour by 2020. Compared to other new sources of supply, this would be the cheapest electricity on the planet.
http://electrek.co/2016/04/28/i-was-wrong-about-the-limits-of-solar-pv-is-becoming-dirt-cheap/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1251 on: April 29, 2016, 02:04:57 AM »
How cheap does solar power need to get before it takes over the world?
Quote
Thanks to a little-discussed phenomenon known as "value deflation," the electricity generated by solar panels gets less and less valuable as more panels come online. The corollary is that over time, solar panels continuously need to get much, much cheaper if we want them to scale up significantly.

How cheap? Sivaram and Kann argue that the industry should set a goal of pushing the installed price of solar to $0.25 per watt by 2050 — down from around $3 per watt today. That's a mind-bogglingly low number, and it could require thinking about solar innovation in a radically new way. Current approaches to cutting costs won't necessarily get us there. We may need experimental new technologies. Or novel ways of integrating solar into our walls and windows. Or robot installers.
http://www.vox.com/2016/4/18/11415510/solar-power-costs-innovation
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1252 on: May 01, 2016, 01:08:29 PM »
Investor Expectations of Electric Utility Companies: Looking down the line at carbon asset risk
Quote
A week after more than 170 countries signed the Paris Agreement and investors voted on a shareholder climate risk resolution at the AGM of US utility AES Corporation, a global network of more than 270 institutional investors (representing assets worth over €20 trillion) has published a guide setting out the threats facing the utilities sector and investor expectations for how these companies must act to adapt their business strategies to a 2°C climate change pathway.
...
“This guidance is designed to shape constructive engagement between investors and electric utilities through dialogue on the long-term risks and opportunities these companies face from climate change. Investors need to understand whether utility companies are prepared for the changing market dynamics that are likely to arise from the policies and actions put in place to limit global warming. Business strategy and capital allocation decisions made now and over the coming years will determine the future sustainability and profitability of electric utilities for decades ahead. Investors therefore have a clear need to establish that capital allocation decisions made by the boards of these utilities give due weight to the low carbon transition in ways that will protect both future sustainability and corporate profitability of the sector.
http://www.iigcc.org/press/press-release/investor-expectations-of-electric-utility-companies

Infographic from @UNFCCC:  https://twitter.com/unfccc/status/726707068665745408
« Last Edit: May 01, 2016, 01:14:06 PM by Sigmetnow »
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1253 on: May 01, 2016, 08:13:43 PM »
How Solar Panels Work
~ The components of a PV cell
~ How solar power is integrated into the electricity grid
~ Solutions for high levels of solar power
http://www.ucsusa.org/clean-energy/renewable-energy/how-solar-panels-work
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1254 on: May 01, 2016, 09:43:41 PM »
As Oil Jobs Dry Up, Workers Turn to Solar Sector
Quote
A few years ago, Sean and Stormy Fravel were riding the oil and gas boom like so many others in West Texas. But when their jobs disappeared along with $100-a-barrel oil prices, they turned to a new type of energy occupation: solar power.

Instead of driving an 18-wheeler to haul drilling equipment in and out of the oil patch, the Fravels now install solar panel racking systems and perform quality checks on Alamo 6, a solar farm under construction in McCamey, about 300 miles northwest of San Antonio.
...
The 30,000 jobs the U.S. solar sector is projected to add this year are a fraction of the estimated 150,000 American jobs being lost in oil. And it remains to be seen whether such workers will stay in the solar sector if an oil boom returns, and beckons again with the lure of bigger paychecks that can stretch into the six figures.

Still, the trend toward solar highlights a fundamental change in the U.S. energy mix, with some die-hard roughnecks gravitating toward what is growing: green energy.
http://www.wsj.com/articles/as-oil-jobs-dry-up-workers-turn-to-solar-sector-1461280612
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

rboyd

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1330
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 249
  • Likes Given: 52
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1255 on: May 02, 2016, 06:50:55 PM »
When looking at the net energy (energy out - energy in) of renewables, a number of studies point to solar PV especially being a marginal supplier of energy at best. When the required buffering is taken into account (in the absence of massive scale and cheap storage)t, even wind energy becomes much less attractive. This reality is hidden while weather/daylight dependent renewables remain a small part of the energy supply (which they are, even in Germany), and can easily be buffered/subsidized by the current high net energy sources (coal, gas, oil, hydro, in-situ nuclear)

This is a recent paper covering low insolation countries, which assesses German and Swiss solar PV as an energy sink, not a source.

https://collapseofindustrialcivilization.files.wordpress.com/2016/05/ferroni-y-hopkirk-2016-energy-return-on-energy-invested-eroei-for-photo.pdf

Another covering overall net energy for sources, including buffering. The ratio of energy out to energy in goes from 16:1 to 4:1 for wind when buffering is taken into account.

http://festkoerper-kernphysik.de/Weissbach_EROI_preprint.pdf

The reality is that solar may be usable near the equator (high insolation) and that wind may supply a useful amount of net energy. That does not mean that it is realistic to think of them replacing fossil fuels (unless a country has large amounts of dispatchable hydro perhaps). As they become a significant share of the energy supply this will start to become obvious, as will the many complications of integrating them into current grids.

The future is one of much lower levels of cheap energy, and therefore a much simpler way of living.


plinius

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 403
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 0
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1256 on: May 03, 2016, 03:04:23 PM »
What a quirled garbage, as a German would say. If you want to inform yourself properly, look here
https://www.ise.fraunhofer.de/de/veroeffentlichungen/veroeffentlichungen-pdf-dateien/studien-und-konzeptpapiere/aktuelle-fakten-zur-photovoltaik-in-deutschland.pdf

And not on some shitty misinformation by lobbyists. Solar power has reached net parity even in bad countries like Germany, which means that your hokuspokus about harvesting factors is a priori nonsense (otherwise solar modules could not be so cheap). According to the Fraunhofer institute even in "bad" countries like Germany, a solar PV module has regained it's production energy after < 2 years, and over its lifetime has a harvesting factor > 10.
For wind farms the re-gain time is << 1 year. Harvesting factor > 20.
And no, buffering does not cut your harvesting factors by a factor 4.

Apart from that - yes, there is no need to heat your house in your absence to tropical temperatures, or to have the car engine running 10 minutes to have a cozy 2 minute ride to one's work. But in principle, we do not even need to lower our energy consumption, if we choose to invest into sufficient regenerative sources.

rboyd

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1330
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 249
  • Likes Given: 52
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1257 on: May 03, 2016, 04:13:41 PM »
When measuring net energy, the lifetime costs have to be assessed not just the production costs. These costs include the costs of installation, backup for intermittent renewables, maintenance, etc.. and can easily be multiples of the production costs. The people doing such assessments are not industry lobbyists (I would expect such ad hominem attacks from deniers but not on this site) but actual scientists. There was a good discussion of this at the Robert Scribbler site. Some deficiencies of the paper on German and Swiss PV were found, but it was considered that they are generally correct. The Fraunhofer institute is an organization specializing in research and industry projects for solar, not exactly an uninterested party!

We have used the very high energy density fossil fuels to build our complex societies, while ignoring the full costs - such as climate change. Now we can't do that anymore, and we have to accept the all-in costs of the energy we use - wherever we get it from. Overall, means less, more expensive, energy available. Solar and wind have a place, but fueling a much less energy intensive society. The quicker we accept that reality the better.



Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1258 on: May 04, 2016, 02:21:59 AM »
World’s Largest Coal Supplier building one of World’s Largest Solar Power Plants
Quote
It is with great pleasure that we see SolarReserve has signed an agreement with the Shenhua Group of China to build one of the world’s largest Solar Thermal 24-Hour a Day Power plants. This contract is part of the 13th Plan of Five-year National Development by China that outlines installing 10,000MW of Concentrated Solar Power.

SolarReserve’s technology is unique in the solar power industry because it offers electricity from the sun at night. The Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Plant in Nevada is SolarReserve’s largest power plant and offers 10 hours of full-load energy storage, making it the world’s first utility-scale facility to feature advanced molten salt power tower energy storage capabilities.

... Just one month ago China made an emergency ruling:

The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and the National Energy Administration (NEA) have ordered a halt to construction of coal-fired plants in 13 provinces where capacity is already in surplus, including major coal producers such as Inner Mongolia, Shanxi, and Shaanxi. A further 15 provinces will be required to delay construction of already-approved plants.
...
SolarReserve, LLC, a leading global developer of utility-scale solar power projects with proprietary advanced solar thermal energy storage technology, and Shenhua Group Corporation, Ltd., a key state-owned enterprise in the People’s Republic of China, announced the companies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to build 1,000 megawatts of solar thermal projects in China. SolarReserve’s solar storage technology solves the intermittency issues experienced with other renewable energy sources, enabling the delivery of 100% renewable baseload and dispatchable power with operational capabilities comparable to traditional fossil-fired and nuclear electricity generation methods.
http://electrek.co/2016/05/03/worlds-largest-coal-supplier-building-one-of-worlds-largest-solar-power-plants/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

plinius

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 403
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 0
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1259 on: May 04, 2016, 10:04:03 AM »
When measuring net energy, the lifetime costs have to be assessed not just the production costs. These costs include the costs of installation, backup for intermittent renewables, maintenance, etc.. and can easily be multiples of the production costs. The people doing such assessments are not industry lobbyists (I would expect such ad hominem attacks from deniers but not on this site) but actual scientists. There was a good discussion of this at the Robert Scribbler site. Some deficiencies of the paper on German and Swiss PV were found, but it was considered that they are generally correct. The Fraunhofer institute is an organization specializing in research and industry projects for solar, not exactly an uninterested party!

We have used the very high energy density fossil fuels to build our complex societies, while ignoring the full costs - such as climate change. Now we can't do that anymore, and we have to accept the all-in costs of the energy we use - wherever we get it from. Overall, means less, more expensive, energy available. Solar and wind have a place, but fueling a much less energy intensive society. The quicker we accept that reality the better.

Your problem is that you are muddling installation costs with harvesting factors. That can't go well.
And no, I deem the paper debile, _after_ I have read it. They are muddling up several things on their energy balance, their lifetime calculation is non-sensical, they have an insane treatment of recycling possibilities (nil?) when they are treating the supporting structures, they have illicit steps when going from the capital calculation to the energy requirements. That is why I have a devastating opinion.
Apart from that: Your "researchers" are not scientists, but an "energy consultant" (do I need to translate that for you?) who was hyped in 2012 by the German lobbyist scum organization EIKE
I think it is hardly an ad hominem to call a dirty lobbyist a dirty lobbyist.

Concerning Fraunhofer - I suppose you are not seriously inclined to put dirt on the name of Germany's foremost engineering researchers?

plinius

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 403
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 0
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1260 on: May 04, 2016, 10:12:17 AM »
P.S. @ rboyd: Your darling Ferrucio Ferroni is apart from his lobbyist work for EIKE also listed as:
Ferroni Ferruccio Zürich Präsident NIPCC-SUISSE

So, should we deem you incompetent because you posted the lobbyist rants of this person in here without thought, or should we state that you are a lobbying agent that Neven should shut down?

BenB

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 282
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 50
  • Likes Given: 13
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1261 on: May 04, 2016, 05:13:22 PM »
The US grid operating company PJM, which serves 60 million customers, did a major study of the impacts of increased renewable penetration (up to 30%) on its grid. The executive summary can be found here: http://www.pjm.com/~/media/committees-groups/committees/mic/20140303/20140303-pris-executive-summary.ashx

A few of the key conclusions:
No insurmountable operating issues were uncovered over the many simulated
scenarios of system-wide hourly operation and this was supported by hundreds of
hours of sub-hourly operation using actual PJM ramping capability.

Every scenario examined resulted in lower PJM fuel and variable Operations and
Maintenance (O&M) costs as well as lower average Locational Marginal Prices (LMPs).


Additional regulation were required to compensate for the increased variability
introduced by the renewable generation. The 30% scenarios, which added over
100,000 MW of renewable capacity, required an annual average of only 1,000 to
1,500 MW of additional regulation compared to the roughly 1,200 MW of regulation
modeled for load alone. No additional operating (spinning) reserves were required.


There are lots of other studies by grid operating companies, including ones looking at actual vs. expected reductions in emissions with greater use of renewables, but for some reason many people choose to ignore them.

Bruce Steele

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1747
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 413
  • Likes Given: 15
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1262 on: May 04, 2016, 05:23:53 PM »
Plinius, Your debate tactics leave something to be desired unless you are running for the U.S. republican presidential seat. Calling out a new members early posting as" incompetent " or work of an industry agent is way off base.
 
rboyd, " the future is one of much lower levels of cheap energy, and therefore a much simpler  way of living.". I very much hope you are correct.
 Greer pointed out many of his readers ( and our readers here) are in the worlds top 1% income bracket. As a member of that less than admirable group I would argue aiming for simplicity and meeting the bottom 99% in some lower energy intense future is probably wise.
 
Plinius, " in principle , we do not even need to lower our energy consumption " 
Your words speak for themselves.     

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2082385/We-1--You-need-34k-income-global-elite--half-worlds-richest-live-U-S.html
« Last Edit: May 04, 2016, 05:55:46 PM by Bruce Steele »

plinius

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 403
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 0
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1263 on: May 04, 2016, 06:03:29 PM »
Sorry, Bruce, I have a zero tolerance policy towards pseudo-science and in particular to the scammers of EIKE/NIPCC. It is the responsibility of every educated person to first research their sources before making claims, and also not to re-distribute the misinformation of agents like EIKE and NIPCC. If they don't and waste the time of honest people, I find it just ok to use the word "incompetent".

I am not sure how you conclude from the global Gini coefficient/wealth distribution and poverty problem to questions of energy consumption. These are quite disjoint topics.  As you might very well know, an example: energy consumption (USA) >> energy consumption (Europe), while the living standards for the population median are inverse.

Bruce Steele

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1747
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 413
  • Likes Given: 15
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1264 on: May 04, 2016, 10:04:45 PM »
Plinius, I would also argue Europe has a higher median standard of living than the U.S. Yet even those U.S. wage earners that fall somewhere below the $38,000 ( world 1% ) still want a new SUV or pick-up truck to park in the garage of their 3,000 square ft. air-conditioned house in suburbia... we have a big problem. It is a problem of expectations and a social issue of assuming more material wealth will make you happier. That goes for the rich and not so rich. Downsizing or simplifying our american expectations are prerequisite to any viable energy policy over here but when so many members of our consumption based society ( even the less than rich ) still expect more shinny new cars, easier lives, and an ever expanding list of plastic crap to announce their status ...we have problems no amount of renewable energy can cure. I don't mean to let the mega wealthy off the hook I just think they are a hopeless cause. Euro rich included.
 We do at some point need to address income disparity and consequent energy use disparity. They go together I believe but that isn't always the case. We can't get there without some discussion of values. That discussion is preferable to pitchforks and a class war but if the poor just want the same possessions that define the rich neither the discussion nor the pitchforks are gonna happen.
 
     

magnamentis

  • Guest
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1265 on: May 04, 2016, 10:52:11 PM »
+1 couldn't have said this better (but worse LOL)  ;)
« Last Edit: May 04, 2016, 11:44:36 PM by magnamentis »

BenB

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 282
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 50
  • Likes Given: 13
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1266 on: May 04, 2016, 10:55:19 PM »
If anyone is interested in the real cost, both in terms of extra fuel used and dollars, of thermal power stations having to cycle more frequently in response to intermittent renewables, the Western wind and solar integration study phase 2 is a good place to start. It found that additional cycling  had a negligible impact on the reduction in  co2 emissions, and the cost was also minimal in relation to the value of the fuel savings. In other words, for every mwh of renewable energy generated, there was an equivalent reduction in fossil fuel consumption and co2 emissions.

plinius

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 403
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 0
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1267 on: May 05, 2016, 12:02:48 AM »
Plinius, I would also argue Europe has a higher median standard of living than the U.S. Yet even those U.S. wage earners that fall somewhere below the $38,000 ( world 1% ) still want a new SUV or pick-up truck to park in the garage of their 3,000 square ft. air-conditioned house in suburbia... we have a big problem. It is a problem of expectations and a social issue of assuming more material wealth will make you happier. That goes for the rich and not so rich. Downsizing or simplifying our american expectations are prerequisite to any viable energy policy over here but when so many members of our consumption based society ( even the less than rich ) still expect more shinny new cars, easier lives, and an ever expanding list of plastic crap to announce their status ...we have problems no amount of renewable energy can cure. I don't mean to let the mega wealthy off the hook I just think they are a hopeless cause. Euro rich included.
 We do at some point need to address income disparity and consequent energy use disparity. They go together I believe but that isn't always the case. We can't get there without some discussion of values. That discussion is preferable to pitchforks and a class war but if the poor just want the same possessions that define the rich neither the discussion nor the pitchforks are gonna happen.

The average home in suburbia has enough roof area to place a solar panel that allows you to climatize your home to fridge temperatures (of course postulating that Americans one day invent the rocketscience technology of heat insulation), even though no intelligent person would cool their house below 25Celsius in summer.
I agree that the possession mania is a bad thing, but it is also mainly that Americans have never _learned_ to think about resource abuse. Have you ever tried cautiously addressing the point with your partner that while affording the cost is no problem, you really have an issue if every second day your household needs a new roll of toilet paper or why you have a moral problem with an open window and a heater at maximum in winter? So, yes, I agree with your points on that, but again would stress that we could afford the current level of energy consumption from regenerative sources, people (again) just don't bother to care.
With wealth/disparity discussions we are _way_ off-topic, but instead of complaining about disparity, one should just eye abolishing the ability to have big inheritances. That way you quite instantly remove most of the inequality, and in particular remove the fully immoral and unethical part of it.

@BenB: Agreed. It is also demonstrated in every day practice in German energy consumption that the networks have enough flexibility to take up 50% renewables and more (the whole argument about cycling and flexibility is anyway a farce, given that the same argumentation was once upon a time used against nuclear power, that time because the nuclear power production was too steady).

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1268 on: May 05, 2016, 01:22:06 PM »
The Energy Revolution Is Actually Happening Right Now
Quote
Two major announcements this week point to the future of electricity.

The energy mix in the U.S. is changing — and two separate events this week point to how we’re getting more green energy and less of the dirty stuff.

To start, there are now more than a million solar installations across the United States, including on nearly 950,000 homes and small businesses. This is a big deal. Right now, U.S. solar is generating the amount of electricity used by the entire state of Pennsylvania. And that contribution is only growing: By the end of 2016, there will be twice as much solar as there was in 2014.
...
Where we get our power, then, is changing. It has to.

The electricity sector is the single largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, responsible for a third of the country’s emissions, according to the EPA. This is due largely to our reliance on coal-fired power plants — but that, too, is changing.

This week saw the announced retirement of coal-fired generators at two power plants in Illinois, which brings the tally of closed (or closing) coal generation to 100 gigawatts worth since 2010, according to the Sierra Club, which has focused on limiting and now reducing coal use since 2002.

Reducing coal use is critical to meeting the country’s emissions goals, including the ones outlined by the Clean Power Plan and international commitments under the Paris agreement, Bruce Nilles, senior director of the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign, told ThinkProgress. “Getting coal replaced with clean energy is the lion’s share of how we get there,” Nilles said.
http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2016/05/04/3775235/solar-up-coal-down/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

BenB

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 282
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 50
  • Likes Given: 13
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1269 on: May 05, 2016, 04:03:07 PM »
Sorry if this has been mentioned before, but recently Abu Dhabi got bids for solar power at under 30$/MWh: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-05-03/solar-developers-undercut-coal-with-another-record-set-in-dubai

The lowest bid may be a government-backed consortium, so perhaps it isn't entirely representative, but reportedly the other successful bids came in at under 40$/MWh, all without any subsidy.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1270 on: May 05, 2016, 05:17:04 PM »
Elon Musk is going to make the sun shine at night with a new SolarCity/Tesla Energy project
Quote
SolarCity will produce the electricity, Tesla Energy will store it – and the SolarCity Utilities Services will deliver it to you at night. Recently, Tesla said they would install more energy storage with Solarcity in 2016 than the USA installed in 2015. This morning SolarCity put out two press releases – one announcing the focus on Utility and Grid Services and a second regarding a 13MWAC solar power systems and at least 1.5 megawatts/6 megawatt-hour of storage with the Connecticut Municipal Electric Energy Cooperative.... Is all of this a warm up to build a (solar)city on Mars?

These two press releases along with prior projects, like the massive 52 MWHr TeslaEnergy project in Hawaii, show that SolarCity is ready to move far beyond residential solar power kits. The massive size of these energy storage projects shows how serious Elon Musk is about batteries, and taking the fight to the fossil fuel companies.

From the Utility & Grid Services press release is evidence of how SolarCity plans to deliver sunlight at night:

Dispatchable Utility-Scale Energy Storage – As a complement to solar power, SolarCity now offers firm and dispatchable utility-scale storage solutions. Our capacity services offering combines solar and energy storage to intelligently take advantage of affordable solar power when it’s needed most. Together, solar and storage can help utilities avoid capacity charges and manage peak load more cost effectively than traditional fossil fuel-based solutions.
http://electrek.co/2016/05/05/elon-musk-sun-shine-at-night-connecticut-solarcity-tesla-energy/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

sidd

  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 5524
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 737
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1271 on: May 06, 2016, 07:16:07 AM »
i guess Musk read the edison institute report too ... utilities better begin looking at their business models.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1272 on: May 06, 2016, 09:50:10 PM »
Another study on this "contagion."  Now with GIFs!  :)

Solar power is contagious. These maps show how it spreads.
Quote
Rooftop solar is expanding rapidly in the United States — by some estimates, a new system goes up every four minutes. There are plenty of reasons for that, from falling prices to generous federal subsidies to innovative leasing schemes.

But there's another, little-discussed factor here: Residential solar power is contagious. Yep, contagious. Studies have found that if you install solar photovoltaic panels on your roof, that increases the odds that your neighbors will install their own panels.

SolarCity, the largest solar installer in the United States, just published some fascinating data on this "contagion" effect. The company has installed 230,000 rooftop systems nationwide (often by allowing customers to lease panels rather than buy them upfront). It says fully one-third of customers were referred by a friend or neighbor.
http://www.vox.com/2016/5/4/11590396/solar-power-contagious-maps
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1273 on: May 08, 2016, 12:34:02 AM »
World's Biggest Windmills Now Make Jumbo Jets Look Tiny
Quote
The doubling of turbine size this decade will allow wind farms in 2020 to use half the number of turbines compared to 2010,” said Tom Harries, an industry analyst at Bloomberg New Energy Finance. “This means fewer foundations, less cabling and simpler installation -- all key in slashing costs for the industry.”

The average turbine installed in Europe was 4.1 megawatts last year, 28 percent larger than in 2010, according to the London-based researcher, which expects 6.8 megawatts to be the norm by 2020. Harries said Siemens has hinted it’s working on a 10 megawatt turbine.

Standing in northern Denmark, where fjords cut through flat farmland, MHI Vestas Offshore Wind has erected the world's most powerful turbine. The turbine produces 8 megawatts of power, enough for about 4,000 homes. It could challenge the lead in offshore wind accrued by Siemens, which has almost two-thirds of installed capacity, according to BNEF. MHI Vestas is in second place, with 19 percent.
...
The turbine is unlikely to ever operate onshore, said Tommerup, the unit’s CEO. “It’s just too big.”
...
All of the 72 turbines in MHI Vestas’s firm and unconditional order book will be installed in U.K. waters -- at Dong Energy's Burbo Bank Extension and Walney Phase 1 Extension projects, both in the Irish Sea.

Computers allow the machine to adapt to all conditions. The blades rotate to face the wind and limit downtime. During gales of 12 meters per second (27 miles per hour or 43/kph), motors restrict the turbine from spinning too fast. When it gets more violent, the turbine can switch off.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2016-04-28/world-s-biggest-windmills-now-make-jumbo-jets-look-tiny
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1274 on: May 08, 2016, 06:34:45 PM »
Scotland:  Wind power provides electricity for 75 per cent of Scots homes
Quote
Wind farms provided 699,684MWh (megawatt-hours) of electricity to the National Grid last month, enough to power 79 per cent of average Scottish households, equivalent to 1.9 million homes.

The energy output has increased by 15 per cent compared with the same time last year when wind energy provided 608,601MWh of electricity to the grid.

Figures released by WeatherEnergy show that high winds meant on eight days in April wind turbines generated enough electricity to supply 100 per cent or more of Scottish homes.

Despite the recent wintry weather the data shows that in homes fitted with solar panels, there was enough sunshine to generate an estimated 95 per cent of the electricity needs of an average household in Dundee, 87 per cent in Edinburgh, 86 per cent in Aberdeen, 84 per cent in Glasgow, and 83 per cent in Inverness.

For those homes fitted with solar hot water panels, there was enough sunshine to generate 82 per cent of an average household’s hot water needs in Inverness, 80 per cent in Dundee, 78 per cent in Aberdeen, 76 per cent in Glasgow, and 74 per cent in Edinburgh.
http://www.scotsman.com/news/wind-power-provides-electricity-for-75-per-cent-of-scots-homes-1-4116969
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

be cause

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1241
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 503
  • Likes Given: 367
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1275 on: May 08, 2016, 07:14:14 PM »
today the sun shines in Norn' Ireland .. so the windmills are being paid to not generate electricity .. the same is true every sunny warm day .
2007 + 5 = 2012 + 4 = 2016 + 3 = 2019 + 2 = 2021 
 (phew)

BenB

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 282
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 50
  • Likes Given: 13
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1276 on: May 09, 2016, 11:03:52 AM »
today the sun shines in Norn' Ireland .. so the windmills are being paid to not generate electricity .. the same is true every sunny warm day .

Do you have any figures for curtailment in Northern Ireland? In the UK as a whole, around 1% of electricity produced by wind farms cannot be used, so it's relatively rare (but not unheard of) for them to be paid to not generate electricity. Perhaps Northern Ireland is a special case? I would be interested to see the numbers, anyway.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1277 on: May 11, 2016, 04:51:01 PM »
Germany:  The 4th Largest Economy In The World Just Generated 90 Percent Of The Power It Needs From Renewables
Quote
On Sunday, for a brief, shining moment, renewable power output in Germany reached 90 percent of the country’s total electricity demand.

That’s a big deal. On May 8th, at 11 a.m. local time, the total output of German solar, wind, hydropower, and biomass reached 55 gigawatts (GW), just short of the 58 GW consumed by every light bulb, washing machine, water heater and personal computer humming away on Sunday morning. ... (It’s important to note that most likely, not all of that 55 GW could be used at the time it was generated due to system and grid limitations, but it’s still noteworthy that this quantity of power was produced.)

...On average, renewables supply 30 percent of the country’s power. That is nonetheless a huge proportion. By comparison, the U.S. gets just 13 percent of its power from renewables.
http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2016/05/09/3776629/germany-renewable-generation/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1278 on: May 11, 2016, 05:00:46 PM »
Two German states reach 100% renewable electricity
Quote
Last year two German federal states generated more renewable electricity than they consumed, according to the German clean energy publication Renewables International. Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, bordering Poland and the Baltic Sea, reached net 130 percent renewable electricity — 2.6 terawatt hours (TWh) from onshore wind, 2.3 gigawatt hours (GWh) from biomass and 0.6 TWh from offshore wind, for a total of 4.9 TWh. Schleswig-Holstein, bordering Denmark and the North and Baltic seas, reached net 100 percent renewable electricity, with biomass accounting for 46 percent of the energy generation, followed by 44 percent wind power and 10 percent other.

Rural states such as Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and Schleswig-Holstein have an easier time at reaching 100 percent renewables compared to more urban parts of Germany because there is more land for clean energy projects and a smaller population means less power consumption. According to the report, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern exports electricity to neighboring regions but also imports electricity when wind and solar power production are low.

Schleswig-Holstein’s goal is to generate 300 percent of its electricity from renewables by 2020. In 2011, the German village of Wildpoldsried produced 321 percent more clean energy than it needs. The federal republic of Germany consists of 16 states, including three Stadtstaaten (city-states) — Berlin, Hamburg and Bremen. The other 13 states are called Flächenländer (area states).
http://inhabitat.com/two-german-states-reach-100-renewable-electricity/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1279 on: May 13, 2016, 12:45:00 AM »
The world needs an "energy diet."

Power play: Envisioning a wind, water and solar world
Quote
Placing planet Earth on a strict diet—100 percent renewable energy—can be done by 2050, without the need for radically new technology, contends Stanford University Professor Mark Z. Jacobson.

The path to a world powered by wind, water and sunlight is, in fact, decidedly low tech, Jacobson says. Storing heat in underground rocks. Making mounds of ice at night, when electricity is cheaper, and melting it for air conditioning during the day. Building wind turbines on and offshore.

But Jacobson’s team in Stanford’s Atmosphere/Energy program is moving far beyond this simple vision of a clean power world. His research group uses sophisticated modeling to develop tailored energy plans that would allow a smooth transition to renewables in all 50 U.S. states, as well as 139 countries, by 2050. He helped co-found a non-profit, “The Solutions Project,” that disseminates these plans and educates the public and policy makers about them.
http://climate.nasa.gov/news/2442/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1280 on: May 15, 2016, 12:30:18 AM »
Going beyond one million solar installations
Quote
The United States is celebrating a major milestone that has been 40 years in the making: one million solar installations nationwide.

Thanks to the more than 200,000 Americans working in the solar industry, and the innovations that have driven down the cost per watt for residential solar by two-thirds in 20 years, we can look forward to marking the next million solar installations just two years from now.

The solar revolution is well underway and clean energy is abundant, but it has been slow to reach low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. Families bringing home $40,000 or less per year make up 40 percent of the U.S. population, but only account for less than 5 percent of rooftop solar installations.

And according to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), nearly half of Americans can't use rooftop solar because they don't own their roof, aren't in the right location, or don't have the financial status to qualify for financing programs. As we look ahead to the next million solar installations, how do we give all Americans—regardless of how much money they make—a seat at the table?

Community solar can be the game-changer we need because it will vastly expand access to solar, allowing people to purchase solar energy produced close to home without installing any new equipment. While there are only about 100 community solar installations generating 102 MW of power nationwide today, NREL projects that community solar is on its way to becoming the single largest source of distributed renewable energy in America—outpacing rooftop solar and providing as much as 8 gigawatts of clean power within the next five years, enough to power over five million homes.
...
Nearly half of all households with high-energy burdens are in the South, and half of all families struggling with disproportionately high bills are African-American. In cities like Jacksonville, Baltimore, Miami, Orlando, and Tampa, nearly 10 percent of households living in poverty are paying $200 or more per month for electricity—double the national median household power bills. That's outrageous and it's also a call to action. Clean energy isn't a luxury; it's a necessity. We can't afford the social cost of waiting for the benefits of affordable, clean energy to trickle down to the families who need the savings the most.
http://www.cnbc.com/2016/05/09/going-beyond-one-million-solar-installations-commentary.html
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1281 on: May 15, 2016, 08:02:33 PM »
Designing new construction to include solar greatly reduces the cost of adding it.

Solar prices set to fall 33% – Santa Monica says for every home and office, a solar power plant
Quote
It seems that whole cities are now going solar:

The Santa Monica City Council voted in April to approve an ordinance requiring rooftop solar systems for all new construction in the City of Santa Monica—both residential and commercial.

Santa Monica joins other California cities San Francisco, Lancaster and Sebastopol in implementing solar requirements at time of construction. The requirements will add between $3.27-3.54/sq ft in construction costs – 33-37% below current solar market prices. The energy savings will more than offset mortgage pricing increases – lowering ownership costs from day one.

Falling pricing, consciousness of climate change and the desire for pollution free skies are all part of a grander trend ending with more solar power. With cities like Santa Monica requiring solar power as part of original construction, we’ll now begin to design specifically to take advantage of sunlight resources. If the National Renewable Energy Laboratory thinks we can get 40% of our electricity from 23-27% of our countries buildings with our current building techniques – imagine when 100% of new structures place a specific dollar value on direction of construction and angles of rooftops ....

A private home between 1000 and 3000 sq feet will add 1,500W to 4,500W of solar power and a commercial location with a 10,000 sq ft footprint will add a 20,000W PV system. My estimations of these costs based upon my day to day experience, when included at time original construction and without incentives or externality considerations, are $3,539-10,167 for the residential examples, and $65,339 for the commercial project. These prices are 33-37% lower than market prices when built later in ownership. When the cost of construction is integrated into a mortgage – this ordinance will lower the annual costs of ownership between $169 and $1,600. If we allow current 30% tax credits to be applied against the mortgage – those savings increase to $227 a year for homeowner and $3,460 for a small business.
http://electrek.co/2016/05/15/solar-prices-set-to-fall-33-santa-monica-says-for-every-home-and-office-a-solar-power-plant/
« Last Edit: May 15, 2016, 08:08:21 PM by Sigmetnow »
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

plinius

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 403
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 0
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1282 on: May 15, 2016, 08:44:46 PM »
why don't they put solar panels on the real roofs? A lot of wasted surface...

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1283 on: May 16, 2016, 01:43:52 AM »
why don't they put solar panels on the real roofs? A lot of wasted surface...

Installing most of the solar panels on a single row of identical, attached garages saves a lot of expense in wiring, inverters, bracing, labor, etc.

This frees up the houses, as detached, single family dwellings, to be available in different floor plans, square footage, roof designs, etc.  The houses still can have additional panels installed where appropriate, as shown.
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

wehappyfew

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 103
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 16
  • Likes Given: 1
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1284 on: May 16, 2016, 01:47:52 AM »
Also, 2 storey houses in an area with lots of snow. Would you rather clean the snow off a 1 storey garage, or a 2 storey house? That's how you get accident rates for solar that exceed nuclear!


Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1285 on: May 16, 2016, 01:58:08 AM »
This 15-ton computer provides internet access, electricity and clean water
Quote
A prototype of Watly, a 15-ton thermal dynamic computer, has been unveiled by an Italian entrepreneur who believes his imposing machine could be the key to resolving major developmental challenges in Africa—namely, access to clean water, electricity, and internet connectivity.

The Watly unit comes equipped with photovoltaic solar panels that produce heat and solar power. Water is then pumped into its tank that produces clean water following a vapor compression distillation process—a method that employs solar thermal energy to vaporize water and segregate contaminants (from sea salt to poisons.) A single machine can purify up to three million liters of water annually and has a lifespan of up to 15 years.

Powered by solar panels, the Watly can gather and generate enough off-grid electricity for itself and various devices that can be plugged into it.

For connectivity, each Watly will be linked to a central network management platform that connects it to other machines, allowing it to create a WiFi zone with a reach of up to 500 meters. The screens on each side of the machine also allows users to go online.
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/04/this-15-ton-computer-provides-internet-access-electricity-and-clean-water/


Watly: The computer that provides clean water, energy, internet access
http://www.cnn.com/2016/05/09/africa/watly-solar-hub-ghana/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1286 on: May 16, 2016, 04:14:50 PM »
Portugal ran entirely on renewable energy for 4 consecutive days last week
Quote
...the consumption of electricity in Portugal was fully covered by renewable sources for more than followed four days (more precisely, between 6: 45h on Saturday morning, May 7, and 17: 45h Wednesday, May 11). This corresponded to a total of 107 hours at a time where it was not necessary to resort to any source of non-renewable electricity production, particularly the production of thermal power plants to coal or natural gas.
http://electrek.co/2016/05/16/portugal-ran-entirely-on-renewable-energy-for-4-consecutive-days-last-week/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1287 on: May 17, 2016, 12:52:36 AM »
Germany Just Got Almost All of Its Power From Renewable Energy
Quote
Clean power supplied almost all of Germany’s power demand for the first time on Sunday, marking a milestone for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s “Energiewende” policy to boost renewables while phasing out nuclear and fossil fuels.

Solar and wind power peaked at 2 p.m. local time on Sunday, allowing renewables to supply 45.5 gigawatts as demand was 45.8 gigawatts, according to provisional data by Agora Energiewende, a research institute in Berlin. Power prices turned negative during several 15-minute periods yesterday, dropping as low as minus 50 euros ($57) a megawatt-hour, according to data from Epex Spot.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-05-16/germany-just-got-almost-all-of-its-power-from-renewable-energy
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1288 on: May 17, 2016, 01:18:14 PM »
World’s largest floating wind farm set for construction off Scottish coast
Quote
Rather than using fixed foundations on the seabed, the project will use a floating steel tube tethered to the seabed as a foundation for the turbines.
...
Ronnie Quinn, general manager of the Crown Estate in Scotland, said: "Hywind is the first of its kind in the world. Its successful operation will demonstrate the viability of floating wind in deep water locations and bring forward cost reduction techniques that will move the whole sector forward.

"By working to share best practice and deploying our expertise in seabed leasing, we've been able to support the development of emerging technologies, from floating wind to tidal current energy, placing Scotland in a very strong position to secure global investment in low carbon energy."
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/world-s-largest-floating-wind-farm-set-for-construction-off-scottish-coast-a7032281.html
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1289 on: May 18, 2016, 01:11:34 AM »
U.S.:  Renewables Are Leaving Natural Gas In The Dust This Year
Quote
In the first three months of 2016, the U.S. grid added 18 megawatts of new natural gas generating capacity. It added a whopping 1,291 megawatts (MW) of new renewables.
...

... FERC doesn’t track rooftop solar, so its estimate of solar capacity added is certainly low. Indeed, FERC’s data sources only “include plants with nameplate capacity of 1 MW or greater,” so it’s hard to know how much small-scale renewable power generation they may have missed.

It is increasingly clear that we don’t need to add significant amounts of any new grid capacity that isn’t renewable for the foreseeable future. In part that’s because demand for utility power generation has been flat for almost a decade — and should continue plateauing for quite some time — thanks to rapidly growing energy efficiency measures (and, to a much lesser extent, thanks to recent increases in rooftop solar).

We also know that renewable power — both new wind and solar — is now winning bids for new generation around the world without subsidies. Some bids are coming in at under four cents per kilowatt hour!

Studies from NOAA and others — and real-world examples around the globe, such as Germany — show that the U.S. can absorb vastly greater percentages of renewables than we currently have, just with existing technology. Yet NOAA’s research shows that, with nothing more than an improved national transmission system, “a transition to a reliable, low-carbon, electrical generation and transmission system can be accomplished with commercially available technology and within 15 years.”

A 2015 study showed that we could “decarbonize the electricity supply with a proportionally small requirement for BES [Bulk multi-hour Electricity Storage] because gas provides much of the intermittency management even when the carbon emissions intensity is cut to less than 30% of today’s U.S. average.”

Thus, we really have more than enough natural gas plants in most places to take us to the point where electric vehicles, second-life EV batteries, advanced solar thermal power and other affordable bulk storage would be needed to finish the decarbonization of the grid post-2030.

So we may well see many more quarters in the years ahead like the last one.
http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2016/05/16/3778542/grid-70-times-renewables-natural-gas/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1290 on: May 18, 2016, 09:20:32 PM »
Storing The Sun’s Energy Just Got A Whole Lot Cheaper
Quote
Half Moon Ventures LLC’s 4.2 MW Minster Solar Project in Auglaise County, OH is online. This project includes an energy storage capacity.

The Minster “solar + storage system is the largest U.S. facility of its kind connected through a municipal utility,” according to S&C Electric Company, which built and integrated the storage system. It combines a 4.3-MW photovoltaic systems and a 7-MW/3-MWh storage management system that provides power conversion with lithium ion batteries.

...
First, this system lets Half Moon Venture sell into PJM’s market for frequency regulation. PJM is the regional transmission organization that coordinates wholesale electricity movement and maintains grid reliability for over 60 million customers in 13 Eastern and Midwestern states and the District of Columbia. Frequency regulation is “the injection and withdrawal of power on a second-by-second basis to maintain grid frequency at 60 Hz.”

To make this happen, “the battery system was sized for frequent charging and discharging cycles.” The control platform for the system was designed “to interface with PJM market interfacing software to enable the system to follow a signal from PJM.” The system analyzes both grid conditions and market pricing to determine how to optimize revenues by either dispatching to or absorbing electricity from the grid.

Second, the Village of Minster had a major power quality problem — “occasional low power factor,” which wastes energy and requires expensive equipment to fix. Minster had been planning to install $350,000 worth of capacitor banks dedicated to dealing with this issue. But S&C was able to design the storage system to “provide power-factor correction concurrent with frequency regulation services.” That saved Minster $350,000.

Third, the system will allow Minster to reduce peak mid-day demand charges. Utilities typically charge customers a fee whose size depends on the maximum power consumed during a day since, they argue, they have to maintain enough capacity to deal with the very biggest peak demand they might see — typically during a hot summer day.The bottom line, according to Miller, is “Revenue stacking is one of the quickest ways to create a strong return on investment for energy storage systems.” He expects to see a lot more projects like these in the future.
...
I asked him how much the sharp drop in battery prices had opened the door to such projects. Miller explained that battery prices had come down by a factor of three in the last few years, which greatly “expands available opportunities that are currently in the money.” Lots of stuff that didn’t make economic sense now does.

We already know there are a number of ways to greatly increase the penetration of renewable energy using existing hardware and software. What we are now witnessing is the dawn of a revolution that will enable lithium-ion batteries to play a larger and larger role in that increased penetration.

Renewables are more unstoppable than ever. The only questions that remain now are 1) will we embrace the kind of aggressive deployment programs needed to avoid catastrophic global warming, and 2) will we nurture a domestic market that will maintain U.S. leadership in key job-creating low carbon technologies, or will we outsource more jobs to China and Europe.
http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2016/05/18/3778623/new-economics-solar-plus-battery-storage/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1291 on: May 20, 2016, 02:31:51 AM »
It took only 13 years for New York City to switch from horses to automobiles.  Tony Seba shows how solar, energy storage, EVs and autonomous vehicles are nearing tipping points that will see them on the vertical section of S-curve adoptions in a handful of years -- some are almost there today.

"...cars were a new technology that were faster, cheaper, longer living and always followed directions. These benefits were so overwhelming that a technique of travel that humans had been using for millennia disappeared in a little over a decade."

The math, and evidence all around you, that shows shared autonomous vehicles powered by solar power and batteries are inevitable
Quote
In a keynote speech given by Tony Seba in Oslo, Norway on March 17th, 2016 titled, “Why conventional energy and transportation will be obsolete by 2030,” we are shown clear data on real world changes regarding energy storage, solar power and autonomous vehicles. A lot of these changes have been predicted by others over the last decades – the individual that comes to my mind first is Ray Kurzweil. What Tony does however, is to show us how the predictions of futurists past are actually coming true – and more importantly – how a certain few of these technological advances intertwine in a certain fashion that push them all forward even faster.
...
By the year 2020, it will cost $1.20/day for an off grid home to purchase a full day’s worth of electricity storage. That means, a household – with solar panels attached – could completely disconnect itself from the powergrid for about $100/month (about the amount of money as two cups of coffee a day). The consequences of this are much farther reaching than a family wanting to live in the peace and quiet of the woods.
...
By 2022, Tony sees an EV with a 200 mile range costing around $20,000 – the average cost of a low end gas car in the USA. By 2025, gas cars will no longer be sold in the United States as a primary vehicle.
...
If you could pay 1/10th what you do now for a car, would you? If you could pay 1/10th what you pay – and never have to worry about parking, down payments or car insurance, traffic and speeding tickets – would you? Of course you would – and according to the numbers – 57% of global consumers are ready to get rid of their car and trade it in for an autonomous electric car service (like Uber will be by 2020). This is made possible because of leaps in the technology surrounding autonomous vehicles.
...
But solar power only works when the sun is up! Of course – but don’t forget that there are multiple disruptive technologies that are converging. Battery prices have slowly fallen, then electric cars started pushing those battery prices lower and the volume of batteries produced upward. Suddenly – all that cheap solar power can be put in cheap batteries.
http://electrek.co/2016/05/19/the-math-and-evidence-all-around-you-that-shows-shared-autonomous-vehicles-powered-by-solar-power-and-batteries-are-inevitable/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1292 on: May 22, 2016, 04:12:41 PM »
Reviewing the new report by a team at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), called, "The Environmental and Public Health Benefits of Achieving High Penetrations of Solar Energy in the United States."

Besides the GHG benefits, don't forget the hundreds of billions of gallons of water saved.
Quote
Annual water "withdrawal and consumption savings of 294 billion gallons (0.8% of power sector total) and 7.6 billion gallons (0.5% or power sector total), respectively, with much of those savings located in drought-impacted California."
Solar power is already saving lives in the US. Here's how.
http://www.vox.com/2016/5/19/11711040/sunshot-solar-benefits
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1293 on: May 23, 2016, 05:10:09 PM »
“First and foremost, this is about how Google can catalyze the rooftop solar market.”

Google’s Project Sunroof Expands to 42 States and Millions More Rooftops
Quote
With the recent expansion of Project Sunroof, tens of millions of potential solar customers from across the U.S. can now Google their own rooftops to find out if their home is suitable for solar panels.

Google launched Project Sunroof last August in three cities -- San Francisco, Fresno and Boston. In January, the program expanded to 20 U.S. metropolitan markets in the most active solar states in the U.S., including California, Massachusetts, Arizona, New York, New Jersey, Nevada, Connecticut, Colorado and North Carolina.

Last month, Project Sunroof hit a new milestone by expanding to 42 states, with the ability to analyze roughly 43 million rooftops. According to Google, “thousands” of customers are visiting the Project Sunroof website each month, and the company is continuously working to expand its reach.

Project Sunroof is currently not available in Texas, Hawaii, Rhode Island, Idaho, South Dakota, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alaska and the District of Columbia. However, Google plans to reach all 50 states in the coming months.
...
Project Sunroof works by using high-resolution aerial imagery from Google Earth to help calculate a roof’s solar energy potential. Potential customers simply need to enter their address, and in roughly one second the program analyzes factors such as shade, roof orientation and local weather patterns to calculate how many hours of sunlight hit that roof in a typical year. All of this information is combined to create an estimate for how much the household could potentially save by going solar over the term of a 20-year lease.

Users can fine-tune the estimate by entering their electricity bill information. They can also view savings estimates for different financing options, including a loan and direct purchase. Potential customers can then click to see solar providers in their area.
http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/Googles-Project-Sunroof-Expands-to-42-States-and-Millions-More-Rooftops
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1294 on: May 25, 2016, 01:31:56 PM »
US Department of Energy wants 100% solar power for electricity grid
Quote
The US Department of Energy (DOE) is readying the power grids of the USA for solar power to meet 100%, and greater, of electricity demand as solar peaks midday. The DOE is funding a series of projects whose broad goal is to make the power grid more able to be monitored and managed while dealing with less predictable and controllable forms of electricity generation.

On May 19th, the DOE held a webinar (slides) titled, “Enabling Extreme Real‐time Grid Integration of Solar Energy (ENERGISE).” The DOE outlined in the slides that solar power is growing exponentially and that prices are falling quickly, and both of these patterns are expected to continue. By 2020, the DOE wants a grid that is a “highly scalable distribution system planning and real‐time operation solution that seamlessly interconnects and integrates high penetration (>50% of distribution peak load) solar generation.”

2020 is less than four years away.

By 2030, the DOE seeks, “transformative and highly scalable technologies that…enable extremely high penetration (> 100% of distribution peak load) solar generation.”
...
The first of goal of the DOE is managing the flow of variable energy sources – the sun rises and sets and flows in a different direction on the power grid. The DOE wants to do this managing of the flow via smarter solar modules that report their production, smarter solar inverters that manage their output, smarter buildings that report their usage, better hardware that programs when it needs energy, and real time reactions by the traditional power company to tap needed resources filling in gaps. The power companies will be given the data to fill those by an ‘Enhanced System Layer’ of software that is tying together the aforementioned layers of users and producers in real time.

The high level system requirements show that the level of intelligence on the current power grid is limited to a small number of central nodes. An increase from 10s of nodes on any grid to “~1,000,000” will mean significant deployments of hardware in small distributed packages at transformers, solar power systems, commercial and residential structures, all that will communicate their present state to a central optimizing database while waiting for directions if a change is needed.
http://electrek.co/2016/05/25/us-department-energy-100-solar-power-electricity-grid/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1295 on: May 26, 2016, 12:47:55 AM »
Clean-Energy Jobs Surpass Oil Drilling for First Time in U.S.
Quote
Fed by state initiatives to spur clean energy and innovative financing measures offered by companies such as SolarCity Corp., developers are adding workers at record rates to install rooftop panels. Oil and gas producers by contrast have slashed 351,410 jobs worldwide since prices began to slide in the middle of 2014, according to Houston-based Graves & Co.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-05-25/clean-energy-jobs-surpass-oil-drilling-for-first-time-in-u-s
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1296 on: May 26, 2016, 01:18:17 AM »
MGM Resorts to leave Nevada Power, pay $86.9M exit fee
Quote
“It is our objective to reduce MGM’s environmental impact by decreasing the use of energy and aggressively pursuing renewable energy sources,” he said in the letter to the PUC. “Our imperative is heightened by increasing customer demand for environmentally sustainable destinations.
http://www.reviewjournal.com/business/energy/mgm-resorts-leave-nevada-power-pay-869m-exit-fee
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1297 on: May 26, 2016, 01:29:25 AM »
Net metering benefits non-solar customers, too.

Rooftop solar: Net metering is a net benefit
Quote
[One] study concludes that solar power provides a substantial public benefit because it reduces electricity prices due to the displacement of more expensive power sources, reduces air and climate pollution, reduces costs for the electric grid system, reduces the need to build more power plants to meet peak demand, stabilizes prices, and promotes energy security. These avoided costs represent a net benefit for non-solar ratepayers.
http://www.brookings.edu/research/papers/2016/05/23-rooftop-solar-net-metering-muro-saha
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

timallard

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 141
  • designer
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 2
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1298 on: May 26, 2016, 02:46:42 AM »
This is an important opening of the door to biodiesel in home heating oils; 20% biodiesel and United Airlines is flying 70-30: http://biodiesel.org/news/news-display/2014/12/15/astm-vote-opens-door-for-biodiesel-innovation-in-heating-oil

More out-of-sight the fact a 100% algae biodiesel aviation fuel is flying ... http://www.diamondaircraft.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/IW_ILA_Biofuel_eng.pdf

This is a Boeing test flight of 50-50 ... http://www.boeing.com/aboutus/environment/environmental_report_09/_inc/flash-2-3-1.html

It's been a long battle to get it into both of those product categories well over a decade of resistance, the only problem is their supply-chain is really crop-based or petroleum-based thus not sustainable.

Outdoor plants need air-water-weather that fits and light, algae only use 6w/m² of sunshine using red-blue LED's is 1/4 that in electricity and grows better, if one puts a bunch of glass plates in a box they make the volume like the top 1/4" of a pond, stack them the pond is fully lighted, insulated and growing 24x7x365.

It's the same idea as a commercial greenhouse versus the field yields the advantage is to scale up from home or farm use to big city, this will be leveraged soon.
-tom

Sigmetnow

  • Multi-year ice
  • Posts: 17604
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 822
  • Likes Given: 299
Re: Renewables Reach a Tipping Point...
« Reply #1299 on: May 27, 2016, 01:23:21 AM »
Game On: The Australian Renewable Energy Race Heats Up
Quote
Queensland has overtaken South Australia to claim the top spot for percentage of solar households.

Both Queensland (29.6%) and South Australia (28.8%) are approaching almost a third of homes with solar and are far ahead of the other states. Western Australia is in third place on 22.5%.

There are now fourteen postcodes in Australia in which more than half of households have rooftop solar. Rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) panels could soon become as common as home insulation.
http://www.climatecouncil.org.au/renewablesrace
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.