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Ken Feldman

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3500 on: April 24, 2019, 06:53:10 PM »
Israel, supposedly a "high-tech nation", with 3300-3400 annual hours of sunlight, and half its area covered by desert, generates only ~3% of its electricity from solar. The rest is natural gas, coal and diesel. Sad.

According to this article from December 2018, a big part of the problem is the monopoly for power generation given to the Israeli Electric Corporation.  However, reforms are underway and solar is slowly gaining ground.

https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/israel-to-develop-6-gw-of-solar-capacity-over-next-decade

Quote
It took years to develop, but Israel's young solar market is poised to accelerate if some needed grid upgrades come through.

After considerable pushing by a band of scrappy homegrown developers, solar power now delivers around 5 percent of the small country’s electricity generation, according to the Energy Ministry, as Israel chases a renewables target of 10 percent by 2020. That capacity is smaller than one might expect for a self-contained grid in some of the driest terrain in the world, which receives more than 300 days without rain even in its wettest regions.

Projects move slowly here, and navigating the web of intermingling bureaucracies requires a special kind of patience.

Quote
After years of monopoly rule by the Israeli Electric Corporation, the power sector has entered a period of reform.

Independent power providers, including solar plants, can now supply electrons to the grid. The coal-burning units are winding down, while gas ramps up, following the discovery and exploitation of offshore sources in the Mediterranean. The Tamar and Leviathan sites generated excitement in Israeli energy circles because they promised greater self-sufficiency for a geographically isolated energy system.

Quote
Previously, the government issued quotas with a fixed tariff for whatever generation was produced. Currently, the government is finalizing its first transmission-connected solar auction. Without a set compensation rate or capacity size, the onus is on developers to bid at their most competitive level.

Solar markets benefit from predictability, which was lacking in the earlier system of occasional bursts of quotas. To make future deployments more streamlined, though, the grid needs an overhaul.

The IEC built the network to carry generation inland from large, centralized plants on the coast. The best solar resources are inland and south, in the Negev desert, and the eastern Arava, between the Dead Sea and the southern port of Eilat. These sparsely populated zones need substations and transmission lines to carry their bounty north to the major cities.

“The grid today between the central part of Israel and the south part of Israel is good enough to supply our needs, but not good enough to construct hundreds and hundreds of megawatts in the south part of Israel,” Adiri said.

The IEC has already approved a plan to double the transmission capacity from the Negev to central Israel. That should be done by 2023, he noted, albeit with the caveat, “In Israel, infrastructure projects will take a long time.”


Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3501 on: April 27, 2019, 02:52:28 AM »
World Bank Provides Over $200 Million For African Off-Grid Solar
Quote
The World Bank Group announced on Monday that its Board had approved over $200 million in funding for off-grid electrification projects in West Africa and the Sahel region, designed around stand-alone solar systems. ...
https://cleantechnica.com/2019/04/26/world-bank-provides-over-200-million-for-african-off-grid-solar/
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b_lumenkraft

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3502 on: April 27, 2019, 07:57:09 AM »
200 million...

Million, not billion. Even 200 billion wouldn't be enough.

For comparison, Germany is spending ~120 billion a year in maintaining and building roads.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3503 on: April 27, 2019, 07:24:51 PM »
IEEFA U.S.: April is shaping up to be momentous in transition from coal to renewables
Signs of a tipping point in national power-generation mix
Quote
This month, for the first time ever, the renewable energy sector (hydro, biomass, wind, solar and geothermal) is projected to generate more electricity than coal-fired plants, which totals about 240 gigawatts (GW) of still-operating capacity. According to data published this month in the Energy Information Administration (EIA) Short-Term Energy Outlook, renewables may even trump coal through the month of May as well.
...
To be fair, there are seasonal considerations. Of particular note, is the long-held practice of taking coal plants offline during the lower demand periods of the spring (and fall) to perform maintenance and upgrades to ensure that they are ready for the higher demand of the summer and winter seasons. In addition, spring tends to be peak time for hydro generation.

That said, this represents a momentous development driven by the deep transition under way in the electric generation arena. It is also likely, particularly given IEEFA’s forecasts for continued declines in the amount of installed coal-fired capacity, and steady increases in the amount of installed solar and wind generation, that renewable output will begin outpacing coal more and more frequently—just as occurred with natural gas ...
http://ieefa.org/ieefa-u-s-april-is-shaping-up-to-be-momentous-in-transition-from-coal-to-renewables/

In the image below, Coal is in Blue and Renewables in Brown.
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rboyd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3504 on: April 28, 2019, 11:33:48 PM »
IEEFA U.S.: April is shaping up to be momentous in transition from coal to renewables
Signs of a tipping point in national power-generation mix
Quote
This month, for the first time ever, the renewable energy sector (hydro, biomass, wind, solar and geothermal) is projected to generate more electricity than coal-fired plants, which totals about 240 gigawatts (GW) of still-operating capacity. According to data published this month in the Energy Information Administration (EIA) Short-Term Energy Outlook, renewables may even trump coal through the month of May as well.

Usual low-quality boosterism journalism; no mention of natural gas being the main replacement of coal, and adding in slow-growth hydro and biomass to goose the renewables number. Wind was 7% (growing at just under 8% per year) and solar was 2% (growing at just under 20% per year) of US electricity generation in 2018. At that rate, assuming no growth in electricity demand, the wind+solar share of US electricity generation will grow by approx. 1% per year for the next few years.

https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/index.php?page=electricity_in_the_united_states

Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3505 on: April 29, 2019, 06:36:44 PM »
IEEFA U.S.: April is shaping up to be momentous in transition from coal to renewables
Signs of a tipping point in national power-generation mix
Quote
This month, for the first time ever, the renewable energy sector (hydro, biomass, wind, solar and geothermal) is projected to generate more electricity than coal-fired plants, which totals about 240 gigawatts (GW) of still-operating capacity. According to data published this month in the Energy Information Administration (EIA) Short-Term Energy Outlook, renewables may even trump coal through the month of May as well.

Usual low-quality boosterism journalism; no mention of natural gas being the main replacement of coal, and adding in slow-growth hydro and biomass to goose the renewables number. Wind was 7% (growing at just under 8% per year) and solar was 2% (growing at just under 20% per year) of US electricity generation in 2018. At that rate, assuming no growth in electricity demand, the wind+solar share of US electricity generation will grow by approx. 1% per year for the next few years.

https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/index.php?page=electricity_in_the_united_states

Not sure what article you read, but the link I provided included plenty of information on natural gas:
Quote
...that renewable output will begin outpacing coal more and more frequently—just as occurred with natural gas (see IEEFA’s recent research, Record Drop in U.S. Coal-Fired Capacity Likely in 2018, and, for a broader overview, Coal Outlook 2019: Domestic Market Decline Continues).

It is worth noting that the first instance of natural gas-fired generation exceeding coal’s output happened not so long ago—April 2015 (also likely to do with seasonal variations in demand). Subsequently, the two major fossil fuels—coal and gas—went back and forth on market share through early 2018, with coal generating more in the winters and natural gas winning the summer generation battle (see chart below). The final monthly crossover point occurred in January 2018, and natural gas has held the uncontested top spot in electricity generation ever since. On an annual basis, the two fuels each accounted for about 33% of the electricity market in 2015; since then, their trajectories have taken different paths. By 2018, natural gas’s share had climbed to 35% while coal’s had dropped to 27%. The trends for both are expected to continue. ...
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Ken Feldman

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3506 on: April 29, 2019, 07:01:02 PM »
IEEFA U.S.: April is shaping up to be momentous in transition from coal to renewables
Signs of a tipping point in national power-generation mix
Quote
This month, for the first time ever, the renewable energy sector (hydro, biomass, wind, solar and geothermal) is projected to generate more electricity than coal-fired plants, which totals about 240 gigawatts (GW) of still-operating capacity. According to data published this month in the Energy Information Administration (EIA) Short-Term Energy Outlook, renewables may even trump coal through the month of May as well.

Usual low-quality boosterism journalism; no mention of natural gas being the main replacement of coal, and adding in slow-growth hydro and biomass to goose the renewables number. Wind was 7% (growing at just under 8% per year) and solar was 2% (growing at just under 20% per year) of US electricity generation in 2018. At that rate, assuming no growth in electricity demand, the wind+solar share of US electricity generation will grow by approx. 1% per year for the next few years.

https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/index.php?page=electricity_in_the_united_states

At an 8% growth rate, wind generation will double in about 9 years.  At a 20% growth rate, solar generation will double in 3.5 years.  So your estimate of 1% per year growth in the share of electricity generation is way low.

And with wind and solar both being cheaper than coal and natural gas, their growth rates will increase.  There are already projects in the pipeline to ensure that will happen.  More renewable projects are planned than gas and coal combined.  More coal plants and natural gas peakers are being retired early and being replace by wind and solar.

Shared Humanity

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3507 on: April 29, 2019, 09:10:40 PM »
IEEFA U.S.: April is shaping up to be momentous in transition from coal to renewables
Signs of a tipping point in national power-generation mix
Quote
This month, for the first time ever, the renewable energy sector (hydro, biomass, wind, solar and geothermal) is projected to generate more electricity than coal-fired plants, which totals about 240 gigawatts (GW) of still-operating capacity. According to data published this month in the Energy Information Administration (EIA) Short-Term Energy Outlook, renewables may even trump coal through the month of May as well.

Usual low-quality boosterism journalism; no mention of natural gas being the main replacement of coal, and adding in slow-growth hydro and biomass to goose the renewables number. Wind was 7% (growing at just under 8% per year) and solar was 2% (growing at just under 20% per year) of US electricity generation in 2018. At that rate, assuming no growth in electricity demand, the wind+solar share of US electricity generation will grow by approx. 1% per year for the next few years.

https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/index.php?page=electricity_in_the_united_states

At an 8% growth rate, wind generation will double in about 9 years.  At a 20% growth rate, solar generation will double in 3.5 years.  So your estimate of 1% per year growth in the share of electricity generation is way low.

And with wind and solar both being cheaper than coal and natural gas, their growth rates will increase.  There are already projects in the pipeline to ensure that will happen.  More renewable projects are planned than gas and coal combined.  More coal plants and natural gas peakers are being retired early and being replace by wind and solar.

rboyd is spot on with regards to the share of electricity generated by wind and solar. Check the math.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3508 on: April 29, 2019, 10:00:07 PM »
But, but, but... Texas:
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According to data from the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) – the transmission operator running the system that supplies 90% of the state’s electric load – wind and solar generation topped coal’s output in the first quarter of 2019, the first time that this has happened on a quarterly basis.
http://ieefa.org/ieefa-u-s-april-is-shaping-up-to-be-momentous-in-transition-from-coal-to-renewables/
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rboyd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3509 on: April 29, 2019, 10:18:29 PM »
At an 8% growth rate, wind generation will double in about 9 years.  At a 20% growth rate, solar generation will double in 3.5 years.  So your estimate of 1% per year growth in the share of electricity generation is way low.

And with wind and solar both being cheaper than coal and natural gas, their growth rates will increase.  There are already projects in the pipeline to ensure that will happen.  More renewable projects are planned than gas and coal combined.  More coal plants and natural gas peakers are being retired early and being replace by wind and solar.

Wind is 7% of electricity generation, that is 0.07. 8% (0.08) times 0.07 = 0.0056.
Solar is 2% of electricity generation, that is 0.02. 20% (0.2) times 0.02 = 0.0040

Add them together 0.0056 + 0.0040 = 0.0096 (less than 1%) for 2019. A few (3-4) years from now it will be a bit higher than that, but the average will be "about 1%".

The solar and wind industry associations do not agree with your assertions on growth during the next few years. I tend to trust their forecasts (as against the IEA's and EIA's) given who they are answerable to. The new US tariff on imported solar panels (the vast majority of panels) plus reductions in US government support will act as a drag on growth. Part of the problem is that as panels become cheaper governments keep offsetting the price drops through cuts in subsidies and stupid tariffs (in the case of the US). At some point we will reach zero subsidies (and hopefully tariffs), but by that point the costs of the panels themselves will represent a very small part of the overall implementation cost. In the absence of a significant carbon tax this is unfortunately the reality of the situation.


rboyd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3510 on: April 29, 2019, 10:54:30 PM »
Observation-based solar and wind power capacity factors and power
densities


Very interesting paper on capacity factors and land energy density for US solar (22% capacity factor) and wind (33% capacity factor). Places like the US, which has lots of space per person should be ok (with solar + grid scale batteries when they arrive) but high income smaller countries may have a serious space problem.

Current capacity factors and energy densities do not seem to have a lot of room for improvement.

https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/aae102/pdf

Ken Feldman

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3511 on: April 29, 2019, 10:56:29 PM »
You're leaving out the battery storage aspect.  Batteries are now so cheap that they're being retrofitted to existing wind and solar plants.  That will increase the utilization (as sometimes excess renewable energy is curtailed when the demand isn't needed).  I posted this article in the batteries forum, but it's applicable here too.

https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2019/04/29/trump-wrong-about-wind-power-electricity-battery-storage-226755

Quote
But now another technology revolution is underway that could help solve that problem: an electricity storage boom. The cost of lithium-ion batteries has plunged 85 percent in a decade, and 30 percent in just the past year, so utilities across the U.S. have started attaching containers full of them to the grid—and they’re planning to install far more of them in the coming years.

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Overall, the consultancy Wood Mackenzie expects U.S. storage additions to double in 2019, triple in 2020 and increase 13-fold over the next five years, which would store enough electricity to power more than 5 million homes. The forecasters at Bloomberg New Energy Finance expect more than $600 billion in global investment in battery storage by 2040. The storage boom, like so many green trends in America, first took hold in California, but Ravi Manghani, the head of energy storage research at Wood Mackenzie, says it is spreading much faster than anyone expected, ending the era when power had to be distributed and used the instant it was generated.

“Every time we do a new forecast, we have to revise it up for deployment and down for cost,” says Ravi Manghani, head of energy storage research at Wood Mackenzie. “We’ve been proven wrong again and again.”

That's a 13 times increase in utility grid battery storage within five years!

Quote
Thanks to the dizzying cost declines, utilities are now building new wind and solar farms accompanied by new battery storage for less than they would pay to build new fossil-fuel plants—and in some cases less than they would pay to run existing fossil-fuel plants. Pairing renewables with storage lets grid operators fill in gaps when the weather isn’t cooperating and dispatch power in more predictable ways when it’s needed most. The batteries can hold excess solar power early in the day, for example, to use during the late afternoon peak, reducing the need for costly natural gas “peaker plants” that have to be powered up whenever demand spikes. Manghani of Wood Mackenzie says utilities might substitute battery storage for up to 80 percent of the gas peakers they had planned to build by 2026. Jigar Shah, the founder of the pioneering solar company Sun Edison and now the president of the clean energy finance firm Generate Capital, believes hundreds of billions of dollars worth of fossil-fueled peaker plants that often run just a few hundred hours a year might soon be mothballed for good.

Not just coal-fired power plants, but natural gas peakers are going soon too.

Ken Feldman

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3512 on: April 29, 2019, 10:59:19 PM »
Observation-based solar and wind power capacity factors and power
densities


Very interesting paper on capacity factors and land energy density for US solar (22% capacity factor) and wind (33% capacity factor). Places like the US, which has lots of space per person should be ok (with solar + grid scale batteries when they arrive) but high income smaller countries may have a serious space problem.

Current capacity factors and energy densities do not seem to have a lot of room for improvement.

https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/aae102/pdf

Not very interesting at all.  You can put solar panels on roofs and over parking lots.  You can put wind turbines in mountain valleys.  To even suggest at the absurd notion that there may not be enough room for the renewable power we need smacks of the denialist crap that fossil fuel shills spread on other websites.

rboyd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3513 on: April 29, 2019, 11:34:20 PM »
That's a 13 times increase in utility grid battery storage within five years!

13 times an extremely small number (current battery storage capacity versus current per minute electricity usage) is still a very small number. Please do the math and tell me how many minutes of global electricity usage that 5-years from now battery capacity will be. The information required is not hard to find. Then assume continued exponential growth for the next five years - e.g. another 13 times (a highly unrealistic assumption). The article you referenced doesn't provide those numbers, because they are so small.

Pure Ecological Modernization / Technological Progress will not provide the required reductions in fossil fuel use and thus carbon emissions through reductions in carbon intensity. Given how late in the game we are, the rate of required reduction will require absolute reductions in energy usage in the richer nations at the least.

rboyd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3514 on: April 29, 2019, 11:41:28 PM »
Not very interesting at all.  You can put solar panels on roofs and over parking lots.  You can put wind turbines in mountain valleys.  To even suggest at the absurd notion that there may not be enough room for the renewable power we need smacks of the denialist crap that fossil fuel shills spread on other websites.

The level of interest is of course a personal thing, but Environmental Research Letters is one of the premier peer-reviewed scientific journals. This is real science, reviewed painfully in detail by scientific peers. I may not agree with some of the authors' other thoughts on geo-engineering, but can still respect them as scientists.

Ken Feldman

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3515 on: May 01, 2019, 01:52:13 AM »
Newly announced US wind projects total more than 6 GW capacity; up 11% over the same period last year.

https://cleantechnica.com/2019/04/29/us-wind-development-pipeline-grew-by-6-gigawatts-in-first-quarter-of-2019/

Quote
According to the American Wind Energy Association’s (AWEA) U.S. Wind Industry First Quarter 2019 Market Report, US wind project developers announced new wind farms in the first quarter worth a total of 6,146 MW — more capacity than all of the currently operational wind farms in California. The surge in first-quarter development brings the US construction and advanced development pipeline to a record-breaking 39,161 MW — an 11% increase over the previous quarter.

Further, eight US states are now on track to double their installed wind capacity with in-development and -construction projects.

“With nearly 40,000 MW in development, America’s largest source of renewable energy generating capacity is on a path to grow by 40 percent in the near term,” said Tom Kiernan, CEO of AWEA. “In doing so, we’ll create thousands of additional American jobs and new economic opportunities for factory towns and rural communities across the country.”

Quote
The majority of the United States wind development is found on land, but the country’s offshore wind industry continues to show signs of continued growth, and the first quarter was no different, thanks in part to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s plan to increase the state’s offshore wind goal to 9 gigawatts (GW) by 2035 — up from the previous target of 2,400 MW. In addition, National Grid filed for approval for a 20-year contract to buy 400 MW from the Revolution Wind project at a fixed price of $98 per megawatt-hours (MWh), the second offshore wind PPA to come in under the $100/MWh mark. New York also received bids from four offshore developers in response to its first solicitation of at least 800 MW — a tender which will award the winner in Spring.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3516 on: May 01, 2019, 02:30:02 PM »
That's a 13 times increase in utility grid battery storage within five years!

13 times an extremely small number (current battery storage capacity versus current per minute electricity usage) is still a very small number. Please do the math and tell me how many minutes of global electricity usage that 5-years from now battery capacity will be. The information required is not hard to find. Then assume continued exponential growth for the next five years - e.g. another 13 times (a highly unrealistic assumption).  ...

This argument is identical to the one that said EVs would not have an impact for decades because the sales (up to 2018) were “less than one percent.”  In 2018, they were two percent.  Europe plug-in sales are over 3%.  Norway pure BEV sales are now 58% of market share.

Even these low overall market percentages have undeniably disrupted the automotive market, and radically changed its course.  The renewables market is similarly in a period of upheaval; the next few years will look quite different than today.  Looking purely at historical statistics to forecast the future misses the larger view of what is happening worldwide across many different industries, governments, and changing cultural perspectives, which will drive new entrants into the market that do not register today.
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b_lumenkraft

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3517 on: May 02, 2019, 09:21:26 AM »
FCC filings detail additional link between MidAmerican and anti-solar REAL Coalition

Quote
Documents filed with the Federal Communications Commission may help solve the mystery of who is behind the REAL Coalition, a pro-utility front group which has opposed a solar-friendly policy in Iowa but never disclosed its backers.
https://www.energyandpolicy.org/midamerican-and-anti-solar-real-coalition/

Just as the climate scientist would be smeared, and denier would be promoted, the same marketing machine is rolling, only this time it's about smearing renewable energy and EVs.

Keep your eyes open and check sources!

Tom_Mazanec

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3518 on: May 06, 2019, 04:52:46 PM »
Could someone please critique this American Thinker article on Solar Energy?
My background in Astronomy (CWRU B.S. 1980) doesn't really help me much to analyze it.
https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/05/the_solar_energy_racket.html
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Sleepy

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3519 on: May 06, 2019, 04:53:22 PM »
Renewable capacity growth worldwide stalled in 2018 after two decades of strong expansion

https://www.iea.org/newsroom/news/2019/may/renewable-capacity-growth-worldwide-stalled-in-2018-after-two-decades-of-strong-e.html
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gerontocrat

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3520 on: May 06, 2019, 07:07:53 PM »
Could someone please critique this American Thinker article on Solar Energy?
My background in Astronomy (CWRU B.S. 1980) doesn't really help me much to analyze it.
https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/05/the_solar_energy_racket.html

americanthinker.com - think heritage foundation, american enterprise institute, etc etc etc.

They gets loads-of-money from shysters like the Koch Brothers and help from the sort of people who successfully lobbied Congress and misinformed the public for so many years on behalf of the tobacco companies.

Analysis?
They talk crap,
They are crap.

and that's all I'm gonna say about that

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rboyd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3521 on: May 07, 2019, 12:02:45 AM »
Could someone please critique this American Thinker article on Solar Energy?
My background in Astronomy (CWRU B.S. 1980) doesn't really help me much to analyze it.
https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/05/the_solar_energy_racket.html

americanthinker.com - think heritage foundation, american enterprise institute, etc etc etc.

and that's all I'm gonna say about that

Pretty much the correct response to a right-wing climate change denying "government bad/market good" libertarian site. Seems the founders went after programmable thermostats proposed in California that could be controlled by authorities in the event of power supply difficulties - must be a government conspiracy to freeze people to death in the Californian winter!

They won't say who they are funded by, which probably means that it is some of the groups you propose.

Tom_Mazanec

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3522 on: May 07, 2019, 03:54:19 AM »
Could someone please critique this American Thinker article on Solar Energy?
My background in Astronomy (CWRU B.S. 1980) doesn't really help me much to analyze it.
https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2019/05/the_solar_energy_racket.html

americanthinker.com - think heritage foundation, american enterprise institute, etc etc etc.

and that's all I'm gonna say about that

Pretty much the correct response to a right-wing climate change denying "government bad/market good" libertarian site. Seems the founders went after programmable thermostats proposed in California that could be controlled by authorities in the event of power supply difficulties - must be a government conspiracy to freeze people to death in the Californian winter!

They won't say who they are funded by, which probably means that it is some of the groups you propose.

I was more looking for arguments pointing out how the points made in the article were incorrect, not just ad hominem.
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oren

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3523 on: May 07, 2019, 05:22:01 AM »
They are stretching the truth on all directions.

https://www.lazard.com/perspective/levelized-cost-of-energy-and-levelized-cost-of-storage-2018/
Quote
The low end levelized cost of onshore wind-generated energy is $29/MWh, compared to an average illustrative marginal cost of $36/MWh for coal. The levelized cost of utility-scale solar is nearly identical to the illustrative marginal cost of coal, at $36/MWh. This comparison is accentuated when subsidizing onshore wind and solar, which results in levelized costs of energy of $14/MWh and $32/MWh, respectively.
The denier source claims only construction costs reach $45-$60 per Mwh.

https://www.utilitydive.com/news/texas-muni-signs-cheap-solar-contract-below-25mwh/544509/
Quote
A Texas municipal utility last week announced a new power purchase agreement for 255 MW of solar energy at less than $25/MWh, one of the nation's cheapest ever solar deals.
The source claims customer would pay for solar below $20/Mwh, but the truth is even $25 is one of the cheapest in the nation.

Quote
The solar deal reported by the central Texas municipal utility will deliver significantly cheaper power when it comes online in 2020. Utility officials said its generation will also fit its customers' usage patterns well.

"Solar energy matches peak demand times, which run 3:00 – 7:00 p.m., during hot summer months, delivering energy when it is needed most," the company said in a release.

Solar's ability to deliver power during peak demand times in Texas helped the state's grid survive the high-demand summer months this year without any emergency events, despite a tight 11% reserve margin.
The source claims customers are unhappy with the intermittent nature of solar and its unavailability at night. The truth is different, especially in locations with lots of Air Conditioning demand.

Yes, subsidies make solar a bit more competitive. But that's all there is to it.

Tom_Mazanec

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3524 on: May 07, 2019, 01:04:39 PM »
Thanks, oren.
I heard somewhere that fossil fuels get subsidies too. Is that true?
What would it be like if there were no subsidies, not for nuclear, solar, fossil...any power source?
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b_lumenkraft

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3525 on: May 07, 2019, 01:22:36 PM »
I heard somewhere that fossil fuels get subsidies too. Is that true?

Yes.

Quote
What would it be like if there were no subsidies, not for nuclear, solar, fossil...any power source?

Renewable would come out as a winner if you calculate all costs including externalities. Despite the fact that oil, gas and nuclear are subsidised directly from tax money, add the following to the calculation and renewables become a no-brainer:

Nuclear is getting subsidised due to the fact that the public hand has to handle nuclear waste. The numbers on those costs are highly variant depending on the timeframe they are calculated on, but given the fact you have to take care of them for thousands and thousands of years, this number is so high, no one can even calculate it.

Oil and gas are causing climate change. The externalities are immense. Life-threatening even. How to put a number on that? I don't know. Let's just say it's unbearable.

crandles

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3526 on: May 07, 2019, 01:24:38 PM »
Thanks, oren.
I heard somewhere that fossil fuels get subsidies too. Is that true?
What would it be like if there were no subsidies, not for nuclear, solar, fossil...any power source?

Some large numbers are thrown around.

Certainly subsidies in some countries like Venezuela.

A large part of large numbers are actually fossil fuel externalities and whether that is really a subsidy depends on your definition.

Other things like allowances against taxes maybe subsidies but if there are whole other taxes levied, is an allowance against that really a subsidy? Seems complicated to tell in many such cases.

http://mustelid.blogspot.com/2018/12/how-large-are-global-fossil-fuel.html

oren

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3527 on: May 07, 2019, 01:32:13 PM »
Certainly the biggest subsidy for fossil fuels is a free license to pollute. BTW in Europe (and Israel) there are very high taxes on gasoline (and cigarettes) as a partial compensation for the associated damages, while the US seems intent on polluting as much as it possibly can.

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3528 on: May 07, 2019, 01:37:15 PM »
Certainly subsidies in some countries like Venezuela.

Certainly in all developed countries!

For example the US:

Quote
According to a 2015 estimate by the Obama administration, the US oil industry benefited from subsidies of about $4.6 billion per year. A 2017 study by researchers at Stockholm Environment Institute published in the journal Nature Energy estimated that nearly half of U.S. oil production would be unprofitable without subsidies.
Link >> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_subsidies#United_States

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3529 on: May 07, 2019, 01:40:14 PM »
HAHAHAHAHAHA

Wikipedia spot on in this article:

Quote
See also:
Corporate welfare

Tom_Mazanec

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3530 on: May 07, 2019, 04:32:43 PM »
Here is another antirenewables article. It is not denialist, it says we must drastically (by something like 100 to 1) reduce our energy usage, and that renewables will not change this:
https://www.theautomaticearth.com/2019/05/renewables-are-dead/
Any comments?
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b_lumenkraft

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3531 on: May 07, 2019, 05:05:31 PM »
Any comments?

Complete and utter bullshit!

Stopped reading at "Using energy produces waste. Using more energy produces more waste. It doesn’t matter -much- what kind of energy is used". Then googled the name of the author and this dude is all over the place. Writings on Mueller, Assange, any kind of libertarian stuff, beats the Kochs brothers drums. Clearly a journalist, not an expert on energy. Looks like a paid shill to me.

Sleepy

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3532 on: May 07, 2019, 05:30:29 PM »
We must cut back if we wish to mitigate properly, anyone noticed that IPCC use oil and NET's in their projections? RCP2.6 has been effectively dead since Paris, four years ago.

I've tried to express this example several times in here:
If a clean grid is the answer, Sweden should be home free?
https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1207.msg181361.html#msg181361

Last years lack luster expansion in renewables and new emissions record doesn't help.
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SteveMDFP

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3533 on: May 07, 2019, 05:38:21 PM »
They are stretching the truth on all directions.
...

Nice rebuttal, oren, thanks.  My understanding is that the fossil fuel subsidies are mostly not explicitly for fossil fuels--they apply to extraction activities like mining as well.  Stuff like "depletion allowances" and other tax advantages, purchasing extraction rights at bargain prices, things like that.  I'm a tad fuzzy on more precise details, though.  But the lack of *explicit* ff subsidies gets misused by fossil fuel whores to claim that there are no subsidies.

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3534 on: May 07, 2019, 05:38:42 PM »
Since I've given a couple pessimistic links, here's an optimistic one:
https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/the-solar-singularity-2019-update-part-3#gs.ad65e0
Solar will save us from AGW!
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Sleepy

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3535 on: May 07, 2019, 09:16:07 PM »
Of course, Tam Hunt was a Heartland Conference speaker.
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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3536 on: May 08, 2019, 07:05:53 AM »
New members on the forum (after ~2014) might not be familiar with Nate Hagens?

Reality 101 -- or, "A Survey of the Human Predicament"
https://honors.umn.edu/hsem-2624h

Here's the full series from Reality 101:
youtube.com/channel/UCLL1uobWCltqNQlOrXBpLsA/playlists

This one should fit in this thread:



Edited the first URL...
« Last Edit: May 08, 2019, 07:46:09 AM by Sleepy »
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oren

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3538 on: May 09, 2019, 08:23:41 PM »
On the one hand:
Renewables were never meant to power civilization:
https://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelshellenberger/2019/05/06/the-reason-renewables-cant-power-modern-civilization-is-because-they-were-never-meant-to/#1901ca75ea2b
on the other hand:
3 huge trends driving solar power revolution:
https://www.inverse.com/article/55481-the-3-huge-trends-driving-the-imminent-solar-energy-revolution

Quote
Many Germans will, like Der Spiegel, claim the renewables transition was merely “botched,” but it wasn't. The transition to renewables was doomed because modern industrial people, no matter how Romantic they are, do not want to return to pre-modern life.

The reason renewables can’t power modern civilization is because they were never meant to. One interesting question is why anybody ever thought they could. 

Michael Shellenberger, President, Environmental Progress. Time Magazine "Hero of the Environment."
Seriously? This is the hero of the environment?
You should understand that this article, and a very similar one you linked a couple of days ago, are meant to discredit renewables. But the articles disguise this by claiming they are environment-friendly, and that what humanity should do is give up modern lifestyle. They don't really mean it.
You will find hardcore environmentalists calling for scale-down of consumerism and resource consumption, and for a reduction of lifestyle level. Many are to be found on this forum. But the devil is in the details, and the way these articles spend all their words on discrediting renewables, ignoring the sharp drop in prices of the last few years, while focusing on dead birds and Germany's costs (Germany started the project when renewables were very expensive, so it's a really bad example), and ignoring the damage done by fossil fuels, should tell you that you are reading disguised propaganda.
In this case, the writer is advocating for nuclear without making it clear.

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3539 on: May 09, 2019, 08:40:52 PM »
On the one hand:
Renewables were never meant to power civilization:
https://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelshellenberger/2019/05/06/the-reason-renewables-cant-power-modern-civilization-is-because-they-were-never-meant-to/#1901ca75ea2b
on the other hand:
Michael Shellenberger says that wind and solar just make a chaotic system. This ignores the use of technology to manage networks, especially universal smart metering and battery back-up. I find his predictions about the cost to Germany of going green problematic, given that wind and solar electricity generation is getting cheaper than conventional generation as are the running costs of EVs compared with ICEVs.

Any writer that gets support from the Wall Street Journal and writes for Forbes magazine gets a question mark from me.
_________________________________________________________________
ps: I would agree that Germany shutting down its nuclear power stations after the Fukushima disaster was really dumb. Any safety concerns should have led to a beefed up inspectorate with beefed up health and safety laws. Then moving to solar and wind could have proceeded in a better managed way.
_______________________________________________
POST-SCRIPT

Michael Shellenberger is - according to himself - a big wheel in the eco-modernist movement.
Here is a quote from a post by Rboyd in the "Extinction Rebellion" thread
https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,2431.msg198572.html#msg198572
Quote

Stage 5: NOW
The only way to keep the "we can grow and deal with climate change" charade on the road is the massive use of negative emissions technologies to offset emissions (BECCS, Direct Air Capture and Storage, Enhanced Rock Weathering) and Solar Radiation Management. There will be massive resistance to this, especially when it will be structured as a huge profit-making activity for big corporations and finance (e.g. the commodification of nature and integration into the market - i.e. extreme ecological modernization). Both the eco-modernists and the fossil fuel interests will be supportive,
« Last Edit: May 09, 2019, 10:41:09 PM by gerontocrat »
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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3540 on: May 10, 2019, 12:04:45 AM »
Michael Shellenberger is a wolf in sheep's clothing, IOW FOS.
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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3541 on: May 13, 2019, 08:08:34 PM »
The price of renewables continues to drop.

https://cleantechnica.com/2019/05/11/wind-solar-ppa-price-index-drops-2-3-in-q1-2019/

Quote
The cost of commercial and industrial scale solar and wind power is still headed down. Power purchase agreement (PPA) contract prices examined in five independent energy distribution territories in the country showed indexed prices down by $0.39/megawatt-hour, or 2.3% during first quarter of this year compared with the fourth quarter of 2018, according to LevelTen Energy’s latest report in May.

Quote
The report found six factors that impacted prices in Q1:
◾The price of solar panels is down, as is the price of steel.
◾There was an increase of 17% in the number of projects submitted over the Q4 2018 to Q1 2019 period.
◾More commercial and industrial clients are incorporating risk-mitigating structures into their PPAs, including $0 price floors and collars, increasing risk for developers. Collars are financial instruments that hedge a loss against limited future gain.
◾Corporations are continuing to invest in renewable energy through PPAs.
◾More states have passed Renewable Portfolio Standards with deadlines ranging from 2020 to 2040, encouraging utilities to sign PPAs with renewable energy projects.
◾Federal ITC benefits for wind will expire in 2020 for wind projects, while solar credits
will be reduced to 26% for projects that begin construction in 2020.

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3542 on: May 14, 2019, 02:23:15 AM »
Green New Deal math does not add up - there are not enough resources:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PFvaBi6vSJI&feature=youtu.be
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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3543 on: May 14, 2019, 03:02:49 AM »
Green New Deal math does not add up - there are not enough resources:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PFvaBi6vSJI&feature=youtu.be

fwiw the Green new Deal is not based on Math. So arguing against it using Math is kind of a waste of time and besides the point.

the author conflates the term GND with "An all electric, 100% renewable world with grid scale energy storage & abolishing air travel won't work. "  

1) The GND is not about the 'world' it's about the USA
2) The GND calls for a 10 year period of 'national mobilisation'
3) The goals seek to achieve a Net-Zero GHG at some unspecified time frame
4) Eliminating GHG emissions as much as 'technically feasible'
5) Meeting 100% of (electricity) power demand through "clean, renewable and zero-emission technology"
6) Does not call for abolishing air travel
7) Is a generalised 'motherhood statement'  aka Resolution of broad goals and methods
8 ) Above all focuses on the role and ultimate responsibility of the Federal Government & Congress to drive transformation in the USA to address the climate crisis and societal needs.

Ref:
https://apps.npr.org/documents/document.html?id=5731829-Ocasio-Cortez-Green-New-Deal-Resolution

I also suspect that https://scholar.google.com would be a more useful source to compare resource availability with possible future needs than someone on Reddit, though ymmv.
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b_lumenkraft

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3544 on: May 14, 2019, 09:23:42 AM »
Green New Deal math does not add up - there are not enough resources:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PFvaBi6vSJI&feature=youtu.be

Haven't watched the video because this premise is wrong from the beginning.

The green new deal is not about using resources, but to lower the usage. So the math does very much add up. Less usage of resources equals less CO2, that's the simple math behind the green new deal.

When it comes to financing, money is an arbitrary concept. It's not about how much there is because banks can just bring it into existence with a click on a web interface. The question is about how we share it. And there the green new deal brings up very good solutions and they all add up.

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3545 on: May 15, 2019, 06:29:39 PM »
AEMO data reveals that batteries – due to their greater flexibility and speed of response – appear better positioned to make money out of arbitrage in Australian markets than bigger pumped hydro plants, and have also grabbed a significant share of the frequency and ancillary services market.

Tesla big battery lifts revenues 20% in first quarter, Neoen eyes more storage
Quote
The Tesla big battery in South Australia continues to deliver excellent results for owner Neoen, and the French-based company wants to explore more battery storage investments.

The battery, officially known as the Hornsdale Power Reserve and brought into operation in December 2017, lifted its revenues by 20 per cent in the first three months of 2019 to €4.2 million ($A6.8 million), as a result of stronger frequency control and arbitrage markets.

The battery has a fixed contract with the South Australia government to provide emergency grid services, and gets paid around $4 million a year for that. But the battery makes most of its money from the frequency control market and by buying and selling electricity (arbitrage) on the spot market. ...
https://reneweconomy.com.au/tesla-big-battery-lifts-revenues-20-in-first-quarter-neoen-eyes-more-storage-57647/
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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3546 on: May 15, 2019, 07:35:44 PM »
Solar energy expected to be cheaper than natural gas in most countries by 2023.

https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/solar-plants-cheaper-than-natural-gas-just-about-everywhere-by-2023-woodmac

Quote
“By 2023, we think solar’s going to be cheaper than gas almost everywhere around the world,” Tom Heggarty, senior solar analyst for Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables, said Tuesday at GTM Solar Summit in Phoenix.

New gas plants remain competitive with new utility solar in a number of big markets today, from China to the U.K. to South Korea. But that will no longer be the case by the early 2020s, as equipment costs continue to fall and competitive auctions proliferate, Heggarty said.

The article also discusses other recent developments in the solar industry.  2018 was a disappointing year, mostly because of China's slow down in installations.  But there was good news in other countries:

Quote
Australia is a “sleeping giant” that finally began to “fulfill its promise” in 2018, putting up 4 gigawatts of solar capacity — making it the world’s fifth-largest market.

Quote
After a lengthy stretch in the doldrums, the once-leading European solar market is starting to show sustained growth again, and could be on the cusp of a renaissance.


Ken Feldman

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3547 on: May 15, 2019, 07:46:32 PM »
Investors in US stocks are favoring renewables over fossil fuels, even though the Trump administration policies have favored fossil fuels.

https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-05-15/clean-energy-beats-the-market-as-trump-touts-fossil-fuels

Quote
Yet with all of these incentives, fossil fuel is a rare loser in the stock market since Trump took office. And that’s after oil appreciated 15%. The 170 companies in the Russell 3000 Energy Index, most of which engage in oil and gas, are down 12% during the first administration to declare global warming a hoax. The Russell 3000, meanwhile, gained 27% and technology, its best-performing sector, rallied 53%, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

As lucrative as the overall stock market has been for investors during the past two years, clean-technology shares have done even better. The 89 major publicly traded U.S. firms identified by Bloomberg New Energy Finance as deriving at least 10 percent of their revenue from the business of renewable energy, energy efficiency or clean technology have returned 50% since Trump’s first day in the Oval Office.

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #3548 on: May 18, 2019, 01:22:45 AM »
India has had difficulty meeting it's renewable power goals.

https://cleantechnica.com/2019/05/17/india-installs-just-55-of-target-renewable-energy-capacity-in-2018-19/

Quote
India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) recently reported the capacity added during the financial year 2018-19, that is between April 2018 and March 2019. The data shows that the actual capacity added was just 55% of the target specified for the financial year.

While the percentage achievement did improve compared to FY2017-18, the 55% achievement does indicate that the Indian renewable energy market may be running out of steam. The recent trends seen in auctions and the rate of addition of new projects that had already been auctioned several months back seem to indicate the same.

A large number of auctions in the recent past remained undersubscribed or were cancelled due to tariff bids that seemed very high to government agencies. Complexities related to taxation, import duties on solar power equipment, and issues related to land acquisition and transmission infrastructure also plagued project developers.

However, India has been increasing the amount of electricity generated by renewables.

https://cleantechnica.com/2019/05/17/in-a-first-indias-quarterly-solar-generation-exceeds-10-terawatt-hours/

Quote
For the first time in India’s history solar power generation cross the milestone of 10 terawatt hours in a quarter. The milestone is a testament to the rapid increase in India’s solar power capacity over the last few years given the strong emphasis of the government on promotion of renewable energy technologies.

According to data reported by the Central Electricity Authority, India generated 11.3 terawatt hours (TWh) of solar power during the quarter of January-March 2019. This marks a 16.5% increase from the previous quarter and a huge 57% jump from the same quarter last year.

Quote
The share of solar power in India’s overall power generation understandably increased to its highest level ever — 3.4%. The first quarter of every year usually sees a sharp jump in generation due to clear skies during the winter season. The jump in solar power generation also gave a boost to the share of overall renewable energy in the overall power mix to 8.7%, up from 7.3% in Q4 2018 and 7.5% in Q1 2018.

March 2019 saw a sharp jump in generation, to 4.3 TWh, and represented 38% to the quarter’s overall solar power generation. An overwhelming capacity of solar power is located in the southern region which generated 58% of the country’s total solar energy in March 2019. Within the southern region, the states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh recorded significant jump in the monthly generation in March but not as much as that of the state of Karnataka which recorded a 52% jump in generation over March 2018. Andhra Pradesh, too, registered a 40% jump in generation over February 2019.

Quote
India’s financial year 2018-19 also culminated at the end of March. The total solar energy generation in FY2018-19 was recorded at 38.9 TWh, a 51% increased over the previous financial year. The share of solar energy in the total power mix in 2018-19 was 2.8%, up from 2% in 2017-18.