Posts Tagged ‘solar energy’

Japan’s solar dream shatters as projects fail

Saturday, November 23rd, 2013

Source: Reuters

Japanese Solar

Japanese Solar

By James Topham and Aaron Sheldrick

TOKYO (Reuters) – The failure of solar developers to deliver on planned projects in Japan will cost the country’s utilities close to $3.5 billion annually in additional coal and gas imports to generate power.

Japan’s government banked on solar power to help meet the shortfall in electricity supply after the Fukushima disaster in 2011 shattered public confidence in nuclear energy. The country’s reactors are shut while the government struggles to convince the population the plants are safe to restart.

To encourage solar investment Tokyo introduced generous subsidies more than a year ago, sparking a rush from developers who came forward with plans that would have supplied the equivalent to 21 nuclear reactors.

But in contrast to the experience in countries such as Spain and Britain, where subsidies sparked solar booms that strained government finances, in Japan developers are struggling to deliver. (more…)

The sorry lessons of green-power subsidies

Tuesday, May 1st, 2012


A recent study, co-authored by Fraser Institute energy economist Gerry Angevine, found that Ontario residents will pay an average of $285-million more for electricity each year for the next 20 years as a result of subsidies to renewable energy companies.

By the end of 2013, Ontario household power rates will be the second-highest in North America (after PEI), and they will continue to accelerate while they level off in most other jurisdictions. Even more alarming for Ontario’s economic competitiveness, businesses and industrial customers will be hit by almost $12-billion in additional costs over the same period.

Such is the legacy of the provincial government’s 2009 decision to establish feed-in rates, ranging from 44.5 cents to 80.2 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) for solar power, and 13.5 cents/kWh for wind power. These solar feed-in rates average 11 times the 5.6 cents/kWh paid for nuclear-generated power, and 18 times the 3.5 cents/kWh for hydro-generated power. The wind-power rates are more than twice as high as nuclear, and four times those of hydro. (more…)

After Solyndra, Sun May Set on All Solar Stocks

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Source:  Investor Place

U.S. doesn’t having gov’t or VC backing to keep up with China

 By Jeff Reeves, Editor,

There has been a lot of fuss recently about the Solyndra debacle. About a year ago, President Barack Obama toured the solar energy company and touted its photovoltaic systems as a perfect example of so-called “cleantech” growth that would create high-tech, high-paying jobs.

Unfortunately — and despite a $535 million loan guarantee from the Department of Energy — Solyndra filed for bankruptcy this month, terminating all 1,100 workers. To make matters worse, the FBI recently raided offices, and now Congressional hearings are revealing very sloppy spending in the wake of Uncle Sam’s endorsement. (more…)

Obama’s solar Stimulus Snafu

Monday, September 5th, 2011

Source:  Wash Times

ASSOCIATED PRESS President Obama speaks at Solyndra Inc. in Fremont, Calif., on Wednesday, after touring the facility that manufactures solar panels.

President Obama made a high-profile visit in May 2010 to Solyndra Inc., a solar-panel manufacturing plant in Fremont, Calif. The company received $535 million in loans from the Energy Department and was a centerpiece of the Obama administration’s economic stimulus effort. “Companies like Solyndra are leading the way toward a brighter and more prosperous future,” Mr. Obama chirped. On Wednesday, Solyndra closed its corporate headquarters, announced that it’s filing for bankruptcy and laying off 1,100 workers.

The Solyndra debacle is a case study in the failure of government intervention in the economy. Founded in 2005, the company manufactured a rooftop solar panel designed chiefly for commercial applications. Solyndra was a poster child of the utopian future envisioned by the Obama administration when oodles of green jobs would relieve the nation’s unemployment rate, generate clean energy and help the environment. Energy Secretary Steven Chu rushed through loan guarantees, and money began to flow to Solyndra from the Federal Financing Bank. The terms of the loans, just more than 1 percent interest in most cases, were well below the rates competitors had to pay. (more…)

Natural Gas Debate

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Source: The Economist

by Robert Bryce

This house believes that natural gas will do more than renewables to limit the world’s carbon emissions.

Implicit in the arguments put forward by Steve Sawyer are assumptions that governments have infinite supplies of money and land. They do not.

Governments around the world are cutting renewable subsidies. The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is cutting its 35% renewables goal because it has no science or “economic means testing” to support it. Spain and Germany are slashing solar subsidies. Meanwhile, Europol is investigating a €5 billion fraud within the EU’s Emission Trading System.

Were we debating energy subsidies, I would eagerly argue for elimination. Let power sources compete, fair field, no favour. Renewable-energy lobbyists will not agree because their industry depends on taxpayer cash. While the $500 billion-700 billion in hydrocarbon subsidies cited by Mr Sawyer is notable and tawdry, the essential question is the rate of subsidisation. And that is where the fiscal foolishness—and even the immorality—of much of the renewables parade stands naked. (more…)

The climate change scare is dying, but do our MPs notice?

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

Source:  UK Telegraph

by Christopher Booker

Nothing more poignantly reflects the collapse of the great global warming scare than the decision of the Chicago Carbon Exchange, the largest in the world, to stop trading in “carbon” – buying and selling the right of businesses to continue emitting CO2.

A few years back, when the climate scare was still at its height, and it seemed the world might agree the Copenhagen Treaty and the US Congress might pass a “cap and trade” bill, it was claimed that the Chicago Exchange would be at the centre of a global market worth $10 trillion a year, and that “carbon” would be among the most valuable commodities on earth, worth more per ton than most metals. Today, after the collapse of Copenhagen and the cap and trade bill, the carbon price, at five cents a ton, is as low as it can get without being worthless.

Here in Britain, as the first snows fall, heralding what may be our fourth cold winter in a row, it is time we addressed one of the most glaring political “disconnects” in our sadly misgoverned country.

Next Friday is the first anniversary of the leaking of the “Climategate” emails – the correspondence of a small group of scientists at the heart of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC). By exposing their manipulation of data and suppression of dissent, these called their reputation as disinterested scientists seriously into question. But that was only the first in a series of events that, in the past year, saw the climate scare going off the rails. (more…)

Five myths about green energy

Friday, September 24th, 2010

Source:  Washington Post
By Robert Bryce

Americans are being inundated with claims about renewable and alternative energy. Advocates for these technologies say that if we jettison fossil fuels, we’ll breathe easier, stop global warming and revolutionize our economy. Yes, “green” energy has great emotional and political appeal. But before we wrap all our hopes — and subsidies — in it, let’s take a hard look at some common misconceptions about what “green” means.

1. Solar and wind power are the greenest of them all.

Unfortunately, solar and wind technologies require huge amounts of land to deliver relatively small amounts of energy, disrupting natural habitats. Even an aging natural gas well producing 60,000 cubic feet per day generates more than 20 times the watts per square meter of a wind turbine. A nuclear power plant cranks out about 56 watts per square meter, eight times as much as is derived from solar photovoltaic installations. The real estate that wind and solar energy demand led the Nature Conservancy to issue a report last year critical of “energy sprawl,” including tens of thousands of miles of high-voltage transmission lines needed to carry electricity from wind and solar installations to distant cities.

Nor does wind energy substantially reduce CO2 emissions. Since the wind doesn’t always blow, utilities must use gas- or coal-fired generators to offset wind’s unreliability. The result is minimal — or no — carbon dioxide reduction. (more…)