The Week in Solar: February 19-25, 2017

Each week, Bay Area Solar Solutions LLC takes a look at the world of solar and how it affects Floridians. Below is the week of February 19-25, 2017; click on the red links for the highlighted article exclusive.

Wind and solar power are disrupting electricity systems

The Economist addresses concerns with wind and solar and how it affects electricity systems now and going forward in a recent post.  Concerns such as growth (realized and sustainable), policies, market designs, intermittent power, and re-regulating investments are featured in the piece in order for solar and wind to succeed in the here and now as well as the future.
The Florida Takeaway:  Florida solar has experienced a good growth the last several years and the although cliche, the saying, “the future is bright” still rings true.  We look forward to the challenges and demands of Florida solar, and realize the concerns that may arise.  We are also looking forward to solving such issues (such as policies and intermittent power), giving Floridians the best of what solar energy has to offer.

“Normally investors like putting their money into electricity because it offers reliable returns. Yet green energy has a dirty secret. The more it is deployed, the more it lowers the price of power from any source. That makes it hard to manage the transition to a carbon-free future, during which many generating technologies, clean and dirty, need to remain profitable if the lights are to stay on. Unless the market is fixed, subsidies to the industry will only grow.”

–The Economist

untitled-designTrump Promises a Renaissance for Coal – But These Clean Energy Numbers Tell a Different Story

Jim Marston of Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) writes how President Donald Trump’s assertions for a revitalized coal market, are in effect, false.  Marston not only publishes the numbers of energy workforces (renewables vs coal), but also reasons why coal is in trouble now as well as the future.  Marston’s claim that Trump’s coal promise is hollow rings loud, and calls for Trump to support the future of renewables.
The Florida Takeaway:  Clean energy, coal is not.  Even with all the environmental regulations, coal is still “unclean.”  Trump’s connection with coal revitalizing the economy should be seen as backwards thinking in the solar market.  Florida solar is not just bankable–it is cleaner and bolstering the economy more than coal.  And that should be cause for excitement, a strong, clean economy all bolstered by Florida solar.

New York solar grows 795% in five years (with charts)

New York has enjoyed great solar growth the last 5 years, writes Frank Andorka of PV Magazine.  Almost an 800% growth, according to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office.  Almost 60,000 solar projects have been installed since 2011.  Cuomo credited growth to help from private and public sectors, including  New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, the New York Power Authority, the Long Island Power Authority.
The Florida Takeaway:  Although Florida solar continues to grow, it lags way behind New York in actual installations.  Over the last 5 years, New York has been extremely aggressive in clean energy initiatives, and solar has benefited greatly.  Cuomo’s relationship with public and private energy sectors is encouraging; hopefully Florida’s legislature can take New York’s cue in policy measures that make solar more accessible and affordable as an energy option for all Floridians.

“The tremendous growth of the solar industry across this state demonstrate its increased accessibility and affordability for residents and businesses…Our investments in this clean energy resource create jobs, reduce carbon emissions, support economic growth, and help build a cleaner, greener New York for all.”

–Andrew Cuomo, Governor, New York

100% by 2045 renewable energy bill introduced in California

“Last Friday, Speaker Pro Tempore Kevin de Léon introduced a bill (SB 584) to mandate that utilities procure 100% of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2045,” writes PV Magazine’s Christian Roselund.  Roselund examples California’s proposed bill as one of the world’s most aggressive regarding renewable energy.  Although issues such as energy storage and regulations must be addressed, Roselund believes that such a measure could be accomplished, should the bill be passed.
The Florida Takeaway:  Again, another state with aggressive renewable initiatives.  Surely, Florida will learn sometime right?  As the “Sunshine State,” it is only fitting that our state gets as much as it can from the sun, including energy in the form of solar.  Although fossil fuels still reign in the form of energy supply, the door is cracked for solar and getting wider.  It will continue to get wider as more see the value of solar–not just to their wallet, but also the environment and future generations.  You can help make a difference today!

the-golden-age-of-florida-solarFPL to build eight more solar farms

SunSentinel’s Jim Turner cites more solar farms for Florida, this time coming from Florida Power & Light (FPL).  FPL recently announced the building of 8 solar farms by 2018.  FPL anticipates millions in savings for customers.  Four farm sites have not been finalized (as permitting ensues); the remaining four will be built in DeSoto, Putnam, and Alachua counties.
The Florida Takeaway:  This is great news for Florida solar.  Although FPL backed Amendment 1 in November’s election, their recent announcing of solar farms can only help the market.  Third party installers can develop solar projects cheaper than FPL’s farms, saving Flrida customers even more than FPL’s “millions.”  For a utility and/or a power company to get behind solar, especially when they back a bill that opposes solar, says something.  And that something is…there’s value today in Florida solar.



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