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jpak

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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 38,862

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Solar Manufacturers May Boost Capacity as Demand Surges

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-08-20/trina-joins-sunpower-and-jinko-in-solar-turnararound.html

Three major solar manufacturers are producing panels at full speed and contemplating plans to expand capacity to meet surging demand in Asia.

Trina Solar Ltd. (TSL), the third-largest panel producer, increased its forecast for panel shipments this year to as much as 2.4 gigawatts from an earlier range of 2 gigawatts to 2.1 gigawatts, according to a statement yesterday. That matches the Changzhou, China-based company’s estimated annual production, and it may boost capacity next year.

SunPower Corp. (SPWR) and JinkoSolar Holding Co. (JKS) said they’re also running their factories at maximum and mulling ways to boost output. The industry has been battered by excess production that drove panel prices down 61 percent since the start of 2011. Rising demand in Asia is soaking up the surplus and will prompt the biggest producers to expand factories, said Angelo Zino, an analyst at Standard & Poor’s in New York.

“I think it’s safe to say that we’ll see a number of tier one manufacturers add capacity, probably in 2014,” Zino said in an interview yesterday.

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Graphs: How Wind Power Displaced Coal Power In Spain

http://cleantechnica.com/2013/08/19/graph-how-wind-power-displaced-coal-power-in-spain/#7z32HEjp6FhAIjoB.99

Today’s graph is sourced from the recent Goldman Sachs analysis of the thermal coal industry, and its conclusion that the window for investment is closing rapidly – thanks to reduced demand, and because of the rise of renewables and other cleaner energy sources.

Goldman Sachs says there are three big themes governing the outlook for thermal coal; the first is environmental regulation, be it air quality or greenhouse gas emissions (which lead to more expensive coal); the second is energy efficiency (which leads to less consumption of coal), and the third i
s the growth in renewables.

To illustrate the point about how growing amounts of renewables impact coal generation, the Goldman Sachs analysts looked at the recent experience of Spain.

Goldman Sachs says Spain is a good example of how increases in renewable energy production has to be offset by a lower average load among fossil fuel plants. “Rising generation from solar plants in particular (whose output often coincides with the time of peak power demand) can result in lower peak power tariffs, undermining the profitability of many conventional power plants,” it says.

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heckuva job

yup

Solar PV power output in Italy hits unprecedented high

http://www.pv-magazine.com/news/details/beitrag/solar-pv-power-output-in-italy-hits-unprecedented-high-_100012430/#axzz2cS53krj4

Solar PV scored an unprecedented amount of electricity output, increasing its contribution to Italy's energy mix to 7.3% of the total electricity demand in the first seven months of the year.


In July alone, Italy produced a record 2,957 GWh of PV energy, a 22.1% boost over July 2012.

According to a recently published report by TERNA, Italy's electricity grid operator, solar PV systems in Italy in the period generated 13,810 GWh of electricity, an almost 20% increase compared to the same period last year.

<snip>.

In July alone, Italy produced a record 2,957 GWh of energy from photovoltaics, the highest monthly solar PV output in the country ever. In comparison, in July 2012, solar photovoltaics provided 2,421 GWh of electricity in Italy, 22.1% less than this year.

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Germany Breaks Monthly Solar Generation Record, ~6.5 Times More Than US Best

http://cleantechnica.com/2013/08/19/germany-breaks-monthly-solar-generation-record/

I live in Poland, which (for the geographically indifferent) is right next to Germany. Actually, the city where I live, Wrocław, was once part of Germany, and it’s now just a couple hours to the German border from here. From living in this city for 5 years, I can tell you one thing with great emphasis: this is one super-grey area of the world. Actually, the weather at the moment reminds me of winter weather in Florida (my home state). I was looking at a lot of solar irradiation maps and stats just yesterday, and I happened to notice that Florida gets about twice as much average sunshine per day as Wrocław — I’m sure it’s the same across Germany. So, really, I am stunned when I think about how much solar power the country is producing relative to other countries (especially relative to the humungous and sunny USA).

It was just reported the other day that Germany has broken its monthly solar power generation record yet again. In July, the super-grey country rose above 5.1 TWh of electricity from solar panel systems. That’s according to the latest data from the EEX Transparency Platform.

That actually beats the 5 TWh of electricity from wind turbines that the country logged in January (it’s also a wind power leader, in case you weren’t aware).

More emphatically, that crushes the 0.764 TWh of electricity solar PV and solar thermal systems produced in the US in May 2013 (the latest month for which we have data) as well as the 0.522 TWh produced in the US in July 2012.

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But we have been told that solar is a "failure" in Germany.

Apparently not

yup

Nuclear Wind

http://swampland.time.com/2013/08/14/nuclear-wind/

The Obama Administration is building the nation’s biggest wind farm to generate electricity to help … assemble the nation’s nuclear arsenal.

It’s boasting of the great environmental stewardship the project represents — breezes for bombs? — and has contracted with Siemens USA, the American subsidiary of a German company, for the wind turbines at the heart of the operation.

The government broke ground on Tuesday for the Pantex Renewable Energy Project. When finished next summer, it will include five 2.3-MW wind turbines on 1,500 acres (607 hectares) of government-owned property east of the Pantex plant in the Texas panhandle. “Pantex is charged with securing America by providing the nation’s nuclear deterrent,” the fissile factory says, “and is now the future home of the federal government’s largest wind farm.”

The wind farm “will be funded by the energy savings guaranteed by Siemens,” Pantex says — an estimated $50 million over 18 years.

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Battery charge on Orkney (2 MW Li-ion battery)

http://renews.biz/48014/battery-trial-kicks-off-on-orkney/

Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution has connected the UK’s first large-scale battery to the local electricity distribution network on Orkney.

The trial project will determine what kind of role the devices could play in the release of capacity on the network and explore how the intermittency issues affecting renewable generation could be resolved.

The 2MW lithium ion battery has been developed by Mitsubishi Power Systems Europe and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and will be operated by SSE Generation.

The unit, which is installed at Kirkwall Power Station, will absorb and store excess renewable energy that would otherwise be constrained from the network.

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Report: Global offshore wind market to grow 32 per cent year-on-year

http://www.businessgreen.com/bg/news/2288939/report-global-offshore-wind-market-to-grow-32-per-cent-yearonyear

The global offshore wind energy market will enjoy rapid growth over the next seven years, led by the deployment of a new fleet of offshore wind farms in British waters.
That is the conclusion of a new report from analyst firm GlobalData, which predicts global offshore wind capacity will grow from 5.5GW in 2012 to 51.2GW by the end of the decade, largely as a result of the UK's plans for new offshore wind farms.

IKEA bolts together renewables portfolio with Irish wind farm acquisition
As a result, the sector is expected to enjoy a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 32.3 per cent between 2012 and 2013.

The UK is expected to retain its leadership position in the offshore wind market, but GlobalData's projections imply other countries will start to expand their offshore wind capacity.

The UK's offshore wind industry is aiming to deliver around 18GW of capacity by 2020 through the development of the next wave of so-called Round 3 projects. But Germany, France, South Korea, China and the US are among those pursuing plans for new offshore wind farms.

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How Big Box Going Solar Could Impact Utiliies

http://www.earthtechling.com/2013/08/how-big-box-going-solar-could-impact-utiliies/

The electric utility industry faces the risk of declining revenues as more customers install solar panels on their homes and businesses. Solar power currently supplies 2% of the country’s electricity needs, and is projected to grow to 16% by 2020. In 2013, solar panel prices for commercial installations fell 15.6%, from $4.64/watt to $3.92/watt. To protect their revenues, some utilities are raising electricity costs for solar panel owners – but with mixed results. Credit ratings agencies are also expressing concern. Is there real cause for alarm or are these companies crying wolf? Judging by one customer segment – big-box retailers – the threat is real.


Part of Walmart’s rooftop solar in Kapolei, Hawaii. (image via Walmart)

The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) ranks U.S. companies based on their solar energy capacity, and the top five companies on the list are big-box retailers:

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Walmart tops SEIA’s list with 65,000 kW of solar power, which is enough to supply the annual energy needs of over 10,000 homes. They recently installed ten new solar rooftop systems in Maryland, totaling more than 13,000 panels. Walmart is the largest retailer in the U.S. and in the world by revenue, with 4,423 U.S. stores and over 10,000 stores worldwide. Walmart and EDF have been working together since 2004 to reduce the Walmart’s environmental footprint. With more than 200 solar installations across the country, Walmart plans to have 1,000 solar installations by 2020. Walmart’s goal is to eventually supply 100% of its energy needs with renewable energy.

Costco ranks second on the list with 38,900 kW of solar power. Costco is the fifth largest U.S. retailer and seventh largest in the world, with 425 stores in the U.S. Costco has installed solar panels in approximately 60 stores, with an average size of 500 kW per store. Solar power supplies about 22% of each store’s energy needs.

In third place on SEIA’s list is Kohl’s, with 36,474 kW of solar power. Kohl’s is the 20th largest retailer in the U.S. and the 44th largest retailer in the world, with 1,127 U.S. stores. Kohl’s has solar panels installed at 139 of its stores, and will have solar panels at 200 stores by 2015.

IKEA is fourth with 21,495 kW of solar power. IKEA only has 38 U.S. stores, but its buildings can accommodate larger solar installations. By 2020, the company plans to meet 100% of its energy needs with renewable energy.

Macy’s ranks fifth on SEIA’s list with 16,163 kW of solar power. Macy’s is the 16th largest retailer in the U.S. and the 36th largest retailer in the world, with 840 stores. The company is increasing its solar installations by 25-35%.

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White House solar panels being installed this week

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2013/08/15/white-house-solar-panels-finally-being-installed/

After nearly three years, the White House began installing solar panels on the First Family’s residence this week, a White House official confirmed Thursday.

The Obama administration had pledged in October 2010 to put solar panels on the White House as a sign of the president’s commitment to renewable energy.

The White House official, who asked not to be identified because the installation is in process, wrote in an e-mail the project is “a part of an energy retrofit that will improve the overall energy efficiency of the building.”

At the time of the 2010 announcement, then-Energy Secretary Steven Chu and White House Council on Environmental Quality chair Nancy Sutley said the administration would conduct a competitive bidding process to buy between 20 and 50 solar panels. The officials did not identify the supplier or cost of the project, but wrote the White House “has begun installing American-made solar panels” and the initiative, “which will help demonstrate that historic buildings can incorporate solar energy and energy efficiency upgrades, is estimated to pay for itself in energy savings over the next eight years.”

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World’s highest wind farm completed in Tibet

http://www.rtcc.org/2013/08/13/worlds-highest-wind-farm-completed-in-tibet/

China’s Longyuan Power has announced the installation of the world’s highest wind farm, located in Tibet.

The company has installed five turbines on a wind farm about 4,900 meters above sea level and plans to install a further 28 wind turbines located in Naqu Prefecture in southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region.

Once fully complete, the farm will generate 15MW of energy, enough to power 13,500 homes.

Tibet, because of its harsh natural environment, and Macau are the last two Chinese regions without wind farms. To date, Tibet’s annual wind energy reserves amount to 93 billion/kWh, the seventh largest in China.

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