Solar Energy

Articles related to Solar Energy

November 26, 2010

Renewable Energy in India – Past,Present and Future

India has set up ambitious targets of meeting 15% of its Energy Needs from Renewable Sources up from around 5.5-6% in 2010.WIth India's Electricity Capacity expected to rise to 450 GW from around 165 GW,this would imply that around 67.5 GW of Electricity Capacity would be needed up from around 16 GW.This would mean around 5 GW of Capacity addition every year in the next decade which is a very tall order.20 GW could be met by Solar Energy according to the Jawaharlal Nehru Solar Mission (JNNSM).Most of the rest would have to met by Wind Energy.Biomass Energy has high costs and reliability problems which mini hydro potential is only 1 GW.Note this is just the capacity I am talking about,for meeting the electricity generation,capacity additions would have to be greater as Solar Energy and Wind Energy have only 20-30% Load Factor compared to 60-80% for Fossil Fuel Energy Sources.Nuclear Energy can contribute another 20 GW. Renewable Energy in India is growing at a rapid pace increasing its share of the total capacity from 2% in 2003 to around 10% in 2010.However the share of electricity generation is still quite low at 3% due to the lower capacity load factors of Green Energy Sources compared to Fossil Fuel Sources.The Total Installed Capacity of Renewable Energy in India is around 16 GW with Wind Energy taking the Lion's share at almost 70% followed by Small Hydro at 15% and Biomass Energy at 12%.Solar Energy in India till now has a capacity of just 6 MW which is estimated to grow to 22 GW by 2022 making Solar Energy one of the Biggest Growth Opportunities in the Field of Indian Energy.
November 25, 2010

Green Investing in India – ADB forms JV with NTPC and Japanese Kyuden to develop 500 MW of Renewable Energy

Asian Development Bank (ADB) has planned $2 Billion in Annual Green Investments in power hungry countries of Asia.For this the multilateral institution has sold multi-currency bonds in Japan to populate its Renewable Energy Fund.Note Green Energy is a capital intensive business and requires large amounts of low cost capital which is difficult to get in developing emerging markets of Asia.ADB is meeting this intermediary gap of funneling low interest capital from developed markets like Japan to capital deficient countries like India.Note ADB is already financing Asia's largest solar photovoltaic plant in Thailand.
November 25, 2010

Will Boeing be Successful at Selling High Efficiency Spectrolab Germanium Solar Cells

Boeing,the US Aircraft and Military Equipment Supplier had decided to sell its high efficiency solar cells in 2011.Note Boeing Subsidiary had created a record a couple of years ago with a 39.2% multi junction solar cell.These cells are primarily used in spacecraft where low space requirements require the use of high efficiency cells without major cost considerations.Spectrolab has continued to improve on the efficiency of the cells reaching 41.6% in a NREL Lab Test.Boeing has claimed a 60% marketshare of the space solar cell market and hopes to replicate that success on Earth as well.Boeing had earlier said that it would set up a 300 MW capacity by 2010 and market solar cells to CPV companies such as SolFocus.Will Boeing be Successful at Selling High Efficiency Spectrolab Germanium Solar Cells
November 23, 2010

Large Utility Scale Solar Projects in USA faces Unlikely Opponents in Defense Industry and Wildlife Activists

The US Government has recently approved a number of Large Scale Solar Thermal and Photovoltaic Projects as Renewable Energy Projects rush to meet the December 2010 Deadline for getting the 30% Subsidy Cash Grants from the US Treasury.California has been leading the way with gigawatts of solar thermal plants being approved.However these projects are facing resistance from local groups due to different reasons.Green Activists are questioning the Environment Friendliness of these projects due to the harmful effects on endangered desert wildlife.While some projects have dedicated millions of dollars for the Rehabilitation and Resettlement of Tortoises and other wildlife,Green NGOs are not convinced.The 660 MW,$2 Billion Tessera Solar Thermal Plant has been put under a review of its approval due to protests that the approval was done with haste and without following proper procedures.Note Large Solar Thermal Projects need hundreds of acres of land and are being frequently built on public land.
November 22, 2010

India Solar Thermal Bidding sees Massive Discounts;479 MW Projects to be constructed with 90% in Rajasthan

India's ambitious JNNSM Plan to build 20 GW of Solar Capacity by 2022 has seen projects being awarded for 479 MW of Solar Thermal Projects under Phase-1.The Solar Project Bidding was expected to be extremely competitive and it turned out to be exactly that with dis conts of more than 30% being offered to the base price of RS 15.31 for Solar Thermal generated Electricty.Note Rs 15.31 was determined to be a decent price on which a Solar Thermal Plant Developer could get decent returns just a year ago.This means that a 30% Discount would lead to zero or very low returns for the Solar Thermal Winners.According to news reports there are 7 winners for these Solar Thermal Plants 6 of which will come up in Rajasthan which seems to be the biggest winner of these Solar Subsidy Scheme.Andhra Pradesh is the only other state to win a Solar Thermal Project.There were about 60 applicants for the Solar Thermal Part of the Phase 1 JNNSM Bidding from which these 7 have been selected.
November 20, 2010

Solar Energy Industry to use an impressive $1.5 Billion worth of Silver Metal

Solar Panels has suddenly become one of the biggest industrial consumers of the Silver Metal in 2010.The massive growth of the solar industry has surprised analysts and forecasters alike and caused surprising demand in the most unlikely of places.With 15-17 GW of Solar Panel Production estimated in 2010,the silver consumption will be around 65 million ounces or 1800 tons.With production of around 21000 tons,the Solar Industry is now responsible for around 9% of the global Silver production.Note Despite Silver touching new record highs,it has not affected the solar prices much which have continued to decline by almost 50% in the last couple of years.
November 18, 2010

"Renewable Energy Certificate" Policy Starts in India – What you need to Know and Who will Benefit

Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) Policy is starting in India tomorrow which will allow Green Energy Generators to earn additional tariff.Note the REC Mechanism is also present in different forms in Italy,USA and Australia and has proven a good incentive to promoter Renewable Energy in those countries.India's Electricity Regulator (CERC) has been actively implementing different orders to boost Green Energy Generation.CERC had earlier mandated a 6% Renewable Energy Percentage from Alternative Energy which would go upto 15% by 2020.The REC Policy will help in achieving those targets by providing a pseud market linked mechanism to inentivize Green Power Producers. Who will Benefit Renewable Energy Companies and Green Utilities are set to benefit the most from this Policy.Suzlon has already welcomed the policy saying that Financing will ease for Renewable Energy Projects.Orient Green Power,the largest Green Focused Utility will also be a big beneficiary.Local Indian Wind Turbine Companies should also benefit from the Scheme.It also provides companies outside the JNNSM to get decent returns from solar generation as the REC band for Solar REC has been set between Rs 12-17/Kwh.India need to increase Renewable Energy Capacity by at least 50 GW in the next 10 year to meet the 15% CERC Target
November 16, 2010

List of Top Global Solar Energy Companies setting up Base in India Increasing Rapidly

India has a huge potential in Solar Energy Generation which is being strongly supported by the Federal Government under the JNNSM Scheme and by individual States […]
November 15, 2010

Why Solar Power in India will be led by Sunny,Western States of Gujarat and Rajasthan

Solar Energy in India represents one of the best Energy opportunities in the 21st Century.However the growth at least in the initial stages will be geographically unequal.This is due to the fact that Solar Power requires strong government support and subsidy currently.Without a proactive administration which smooths out the process of setting up a solar plant,growth of solar energy is almost impossible.The Indian Federal Government has already given it a strong push targeting 1000 MW by 2013 and 20 GW by 2022 under the JNSSM.While the Subsidy Program is facing some initial hurdles due to debt financing and aggressive project bidding,the long term secular growth story remains good.Some states have also been aggressive in supporting solar energy namely the western states of Gujarat and Rajasthan.
November 15, 2010

India Solar Project Bidding under JNNSM to be Hypercompetitive and Loss Making like China

India's 150 MW Solar Allocation to PV Technology has seen overbidding upto 10 times and the winners will be decided based upon the discounting on the Rs 17.91/Kwh (40c/KwH).The discounting promises to be clearly be irrational and loss making as Large Conglomerates and Integrated Solar Companies fight with each other to win projects at any cost.Feed in Tariffs across the world has only worked out well where there is no discounting or bidding mechanism.In case of bidding,especially in immature nascent markets,the winners of the projects end up as the losers.Renewable Energy also ends up on the losing side as many of these projects are not completed or have to be restructured defeating the entire purpose of the Subsidy Scheme.India's Solar Energy Sector promises to be one of the biggest energy opportunities in the 21st Century.However this will require a very smart subsidy strategy by the government
November 15, 2010

Which is the Lowest Cost Solar Panel Manufacturer in the World

First Solar,the US based Cadmium Tellurium (Cd-Te) is the lowest cost panel producer in the world today if you don't include any penalty for low efficiency.Even if you penalize the Cd-Te Technology for its lower efficiency vis-a-vis the higher efficiency crystalline technology,First Solar is clearly the leader with a core cost of 74c/watt.The company has a roadmap of reducing the cost to 52c/watt by 2014 and given its track record it seems quite achievable.In Cd-Te,some new competitors have claimed even lower costs than First Solar but they have yet to prove it in large scale production.General Electric,Abound Solar are some of the other Cd-Te players which are planning commercial production in a year or two.But with around 2 GW of capacity,they will have a lot of catching up to do.
November 13, 2010

Taiwan's Solar Cell Concentration in the PV Supply Chain makes it Vulnerable to Oversupply

However Solar Capacity in the Industry has increased rapidly particularly in Taiwan and China.Besides Semiconductor and LCD Heavyweights like AUO and TSMC have made huge investments into Solar Production.Korean Companies are too making a strong entry into the already crowded segment.Despite some capacity build in the wafer and module parts of the supply chain,Taiwan remains largely a cell producer.Compared to the integrated Chinese producers like Trina,Yingli,LDK and others,Taiwanese Solar Makers are vulnerable to sharp price cuts.They depend on European customers who are largely uncompetitive and would face huge pressures with the decline in the German market.Chinese producers have much lower costs due to their vertical integration which currenly most Taiwanese lack except Motech.Taiwanese Cell Capacity is set to increase manifold next year from the current 5 GW.Most of the Tier 2 Cell Producers would be running empty while even Tier 1 players will see a sharp decrease from this year.
November 13, 2010

Solar Energy in India draws another Industrial Giant as Areva looks to invest $3 Billion in Solar Thermal

Solar Energy Future Growth has been vastly underestimated by policy makers and analysts but private companies are recognized the huge potential.India's JNNSM Policy which is meant to jumpstart India's Solar Energy has drawn huge interest from both domestic and foreign companies.The number of Solar Companies in India are growing at a rapid pace attracted by the huge opportunity.While starting troubles like project financing of debt etc are present,the long term growth potential of Solar Energy in India is tremendous.Global Industrial Giants like GE,Siemens have already established or in the process of investing huge sums of money to capitalize on this Green Trend.Now French Giant Areva has joined them.Note Areva is the global leader in nuclear equipment technology and is not known for its prowess in Solar and Wind Energy.However the company is making a play in Solar Thermal Technology where it hopes to use its existing skills and knowledge.Areva had acquired US startup Ausra which had fallen on hard times earlier.However Areva has not won too many Solar Thermal Projects in the recent past.However things may change starting with India
November 13, 2010

BP,Accionia and Suntech Fight for a Slice of the Controversial Australian $1.5 Billion Solar Flagship Subsidy Dollars

Australia has shortlisted 8 projects with 4 Solar PV and 4 Solar Thermal Projects for its Solar Flagship Program which will be decided in 2011.BP Solar with 150 MW and Suntech/Infigen with 195 MW are on the shortlist.The other 2 companies are energy utilities which are proposing to use Cd-Te Panels ( I think from First Solar).Note both of these energy utilities are small and might face problems in fund raising and execution.The firms shortlisted for the Solar Thermal Projects don't inspire much confidence either.The selection procedure and how the subsidy will be disbursed has ran into controversy with accusations of bias and partiality.WA has not gotten any projects while Queensland province has gotten most of the projects.The firms shortlisted have also come under fire as they don't have much experience.Not much information on how the firms were shortlisted but these companies are definitely not the best or cheapest by a big margin.Australia has generally made a mess of promoting renewable energy with New South Wales cutting feed in tariffs sharply after giving an overly generous subsidy.The Solar Flagship Program looks like an expensive mistake in the making if it comes to fruition.
November 13, 2010

Why do Reputed Consultants like BCG remain Blind and Ignorant to Solar PV Advances and Competitiveness

Solar PV Technology have made a huge advance in the last 2-3 years leading to a demand explosion with more than 100% growth forecast this year.Crystalline PV Technology as well as Thin Film Technology like CIGs and CdTe have reduced their costs drastically.While Solar PV still requires generous government subsidies for their growth,grid parity has come very close.Solar PV Technology has become economically competitive in parts of Italy where a unique combination of high electricity rates and sunshine have made Solar PV Technology very attractive.Costs are being reduced at more than 10% per year which would make Solar PV competitive in 2-3 years in most parts of the world.However mainstream and reputed forecasters and companies like Boston Consulting Group remain blind and ignorant to this.BCG in a recent report has said that biofuels and Concentrated Solar Thermal (CSP) Technology will become competitive.I have issues with both of these technologies.
November 4, 2010

AUO Differentiates itself by targeting Notebooks in aCrowded Solar Market

AUO is investing massively in Solar Energy to build a multi Gigawatt capacity in partnership with US Solar Efficiency Leader Sunpower.Not only is AUO building a huge factory in JV with Sunpower in Malaysia,it has also made plans to set up a 2 GW Solar Crystalline Solar Cell Fab in Taiwan.This will be a 50:50 mix of multi and monocrystalline technology.Note the solar market despite seeing a massive 100% jump in solar demand in 2010 faces a huge supply overhang from a number of new large players.TSMC,Samsung,Hyundai,Saint Gobain,BYD are just some of the heavyweights ramping up their solar expansion plans.AUO faces a tough time in this crowded market which already has Chinese incumbents establishing gigawatt capacities.A new player needs to differentiate himself in the increasingly commodity market that solar modules have become.
November 4, 2010

Solyndra Fab Shutdown a Slap in the Face of USA Discretionary Federal Green Aid

In my previous missive I had opined that the US Solar Energy Policies were misguided as President Obama visited a Solyndra Factory and the US Department […]
October 30, 2010

Planned Czech Solar FIT cuts will heavily favor subsidies to Small Distributed Rooftop Installations

Czech has seen the biggest Solar Growth Explosion compared to its size powered by extremely generous feed in tariffs.This has made Czech one of the top solar installers in the world and led to a huge public backlash.The Czech government has responded by proposing to bust the Solar Energy Bubble by drastically cutting down the Feed in Tariffs.The administration is also trying to reign in the ballooning subsidies from existing solar plants by imposing taxes on solar plants and carbon credits.This is being done as the Czech consumers face a 15-25% increase in electricity prices next year.The country had little option as its very badly designed tariffs had led to a situation where Czech Industry faced the prospect of becoming uncompetitive.
October 27, 2010

Solar Energy Future Growth Vastly Underestimated by Policymakers and Analysts

Solar Energy is currently the amongst the costliest form of energy generation and except in niche applications is not economic without some sort of government subsidies.However growth in solar energy has been one of the fastest in the past decade upwards of 50% CAGR as costs have declined and technology improved manifold.Solar Energy forms just 0.1% of the the total energy supply of the planet currently and analysts and decisionmakers don't think that Solar Energy can form a big chunk in the future as well.However I differ strongly in that aspect.The main reason for my very bullish opinion on Solar Energy is based on the simple fact that Solar Energy is the only form of Energy whose costs are declining rapidly on a secular basis.In a world facing the prospects of "peak commodity",solar energy remains vastly abundant and it remains upto human technology to capture it at the lowest costs.
October 26, 2010

Reasons behind Malaysia's Surprising Success in Solar Industry beating larger rivals USA and Japan

Malaysia is set to become one of the largest solar panel producing nations overtaking much larger rivals USA and Japan as world class companies start/expand capacities in Malaysia.Every country is trying to promoter Green Industry in the fight for leadership of this new age industry and to create high paying green jobs.Billions of Dollars in Green Stimulus has been doled out by governments but with varying degrees of success.USA has managed to squander most of its Green Subsidies despite possessing a very strong technological base as US Companies shutter US factories to outsource production to Asia and Mexico.European Countries have seen a similar phenomenon as their high costs force domestic companies to shift to Asia for their survival.China and Taiwan are the largest solar cell producers in Asia due to their low costs,good infrastructure and massive government support.Taiwan has also been able to leverage its semiconductor strengths with companies like TSMC and AUO expanding into solar energy.However Malaysia has been a surprise winner as well.It is important to understand the reasons behind Malaysia's success as it has beat countries with much larger solar energy markets like USA and Japan.It also has no massive semiconductor industry like Taiwan which can redeploy its skills.It has only recently introduced a Feed in Tariff Policy to promote Renewable Energy
October 26, 2010

India's Parliamentary Building follows the Green Trend in Installing Solar Panels like the White House

Putting up Solar Panels on prominent landmarks is an easy and cheap way to promote Green Energy.In the last few years, a number for prominent places in the world have been installing solar energy in an effort to reduce GHGs and to publicize the clean economy.It advertises the advantages of putting solar panels in powering buildings which account for 40% of the global energy usage.'s Sydney's Opera House,India's Golden Temple are some of the other landmarks that have installed solar panels to cut fossil fuel use and encourage the use of renewable energy.White House has also decided to install solar panels next year after a prolonged campaign by green activists.Note White House had earlier installed solar panels during the time of Jimmy Carter and the OPEC Oil Embargo.These has been decommissioned by Reagan reflecting changed energy fundamentals.India's Parliament House has now decided to go green using solar panels and biomass plants to drastically reduce its carbon footprint.The Indian Parliament generate a huge amount of food waste which will help in powering the biomass plant.
October 26, 2010

Are the Subsidized Huge Solar Thermal Plants in California a Massive Waste of Public Money

California and the Federal Government have recently approved a number of big Solar Thermal Plants totaling around 2800 MW.These plants utilize Concentrated Solar Thermal (CSP) Technology and uses mirrors and towers instead of normal PV panels.The haste with which these plants are being permitted and approved is mainly due to the expiry of the Treasury Grant Scheme by end of 2010.According the the American Stimulus rules,only Green Projects which have broken ground or spent 5% of their costs would be eligible for the 30% Cash Subsidy.6 Huge Solar Thermal Plants have been approved with the biggest Blythe plant being the most recent.The capital costs for these plants are extremely high at around $6/watt which makes me question their economics.PV panels can be installed at around $3-3.5 /watt which is around 40-50% lower.Despite the higher capacity factors for Solar Thermal Plants and their ability to store energy for a short period,the cost difference is too large.
October 25, 2010

BYD Builds its Solar Energy Dreams as its signs a huge $300 million polysilicon deal

BYD the Chinese battery and electric vehicle producer made famous after Warren Buffet made an investment has been facing rough times recently.Its falling auto growth,problems with land acquisitions in China and an incoherent strategy has hurt its profits and stock price in 2010.The Company has put on too many hats with investment in various green technologies besides its bread and butter car business.The most ambitious plans of BYD undoubtedly lies in the Solar Energy Business though little details have been revealed.The company is planning to spend 22.5 Billion Yuan on Solar Energy over the next 5 years for which it has already secured financing.The company has started a 100 MW cell plant in the Shaanxi province and plans to expand to 5000 MW by 2015.However its recent travails had made one think that they would have put their aside Solar ambitions .However that does not appear so.
October 24, 2010

Solar Power Companies in India Growing by the Day but a Long Way to Go

Solar Power in India is growing at a rapid clip with the strong government support through the ambitious Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM).Rapidly Falling Costs,Massive Power Deficits,Huge Growing Energy Demand and Peak Oil all make Solar Energy in India one of the biggest energy opportunities in the 21st Century.People are slowly recognizing this large Green Money Making Opportunity with companies like Suntech,Siemens and Trina Solar entering into partnership with local players.Suntech has tied up with independent power producer IPP while Siemens has tied up for solar thermal energy with the Adani Conglomerate.This is just the initial trickle with large foreign companies waiting to flood the Indian market.There have been some initial hiccups in Debt Financing of Solar Energy in India but I expect the long term secular growth story to be unaffected. Solar Power Companies in India can be divided into various categories based on solar equipment manufacturing,independent power producer,renewable arms of large power companies etc.I have already covered the Top 10 Solar Module Production Companies in my Solar Panels in India article.Here is the list once again.
October 24, 2010

China's Hanlong Group prefers Solar CPV Technology over Plain Vanilla Silicon

Concentrated Photovoltaic (CPV) Technology Gaining Ground Concentrated Photovoltaic (CPV) Technology has found some favor in 2010 with some major projects and investments coming its way.CPV Technology which is a poorer cousin of its more illustrious PV Technologies like c-Si and Thin Film has found some attention with its low cost and high efficiency.US Startups like Amonix,Solaria have found some traction bagging some big projects backed by financial investors.Concentrix Solar backed by European Specialist Wafer Producer Soitec has recently announced a partnership deal with US Energy Efficiency Leader Johnson Controls.With c-Si Technology fast reaching its Efficiency Limits,CPV is looked upon as the way forward for the Technology to progress.CPV Technology works by concentrating the energy of the sun through optics and has the potential to dramatically cut the costs as it uses much less materials.The Technology slowed down because of the polysilicon price crash but has found increasing attention in the past few days
October 22, 2010

Solar Frontier – Can this Japanese Copper Indium Selenium (CIS) Player Erode the Chinese Crystalline Silicon Dominance

Solar Frontier is a subsidiary of Showa Shell Sekiyu and is listed on the Japanese Stock Exchange.The Company has big plans for the Solar Energy Market planning to increase its capacity by more than 10 times in 2011 to around 1 Gw in total.All its 3 plants are located in Miyazaki in Japan and uses previous plasma plant of Hitachi.Solar Frontier claims 11.5% efficiency for its CIS modules which are expected to go upto 14% by 2014.The Company is spending around $1 Billion in Capex for building the 1 GW capacity implying roughly $1 capex/watt which is not exactly cheap though not very expensive either.Note Thin Film Competition is hotting up with Saint Gobain-Hyundai,TSMC,Miasole,Oerlikon Solar,Sharp,Nanosolar all making plans for huge capacity expansion in the next couple of years.Solar Frontier has signed some small deals for supplying 1-3 MW in Thailand,Japan and Australia Recently.However the cost structure of the company is not known till now just like Sharp.While Solar Frontier looks good on the capacity and partnerships front,it has still to prove itself on costs to really push the Chinese Solar Companies which are dominating the Solar Scene right now with their low cost polysilicon panel production.Note 60% of the Solar Panel Production in Q210 was estimated to be done by Chinese based manufacturers.
October 22, 2010

Green Investing in India – Siemens partners Adani Conglomerate to expand its Renewable Energy Portfolio

The JV with the Adani Group is a win-win for both companies.Adani Group is setting up 16000 MW of Thermal Based Plants in India over the next few years and has also planned a 100 MW Solar Plant in Gujarat.It has started a company Adani Renewable Energy to take forward its Green Energy initiatives.The tie-up with Siemens will allow it to access cutting edge Green Technology while Siemens will get a huge customer for its Energy Equipment.Renewable Energy in India is a huge growth opportunity considering that India will have to increase its Renewable Energy by almost 45 GW over the next 10 years if it has to meet 15% of its Electricity Requirements from Green Sources as mandated by the CERC.
October 21, 2010

Solar Energy in India Imperative for Rich State of Haryana But Desperately Poor in Renewable Energy

Haryana is one of the richest states in India strategically located near India's capital of Delhi.Haryana cities like Gurgaon and Faridabad have benefited hugely from being part of India's National Capital Region (NCR).However Haryana only generates 0.5% of its 4000 MW of Electricity from Renewable Energy Sources.The state has negligible Wind or Biomass Energy.Despite a Department of Renewable Energy being setup to specifically promote the use of Alternative Energy Sources,the state has not had much success.Haryana is richly endowed with Solar Energy Resources with 320 days sunny days.The State has managed to win some allocation from the centre's JNNSM scheme.It is also promoting the use of solar energy through disseminating solar kits amongst 2000 schools and providing solar lighting in around 500 villages.Note India had already made it mandatory for 6% of the Energy to be generated from Renewable Energy Sources.Haryana has a long way to go and might have to buy a huge amount of expensive Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) unless it gets its act together.
October 21, 2010

Most Electricity Expensive USA State Hawaii implements a Limited Renewable Energy Feed in Tariff despite Utility Opposition

The HPUC has given a FIT rate which is quite low for solar energy and has failed to implement a policy for installations between 500-5000 KW.Also the FIT rates for Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) does not make sense at all for under 500 KW installations.Don't think there exists a single decent producer of such small CSP plants.The FIT Policy was passed despite stiff opposition from the island's utilities who questioned the Feed in Tariff as a good Green Incentive.The huge success enjoyed in Europe by FIT did not make a big impression.Note 80% of the world's solar installations depend on Feed in Tariffs.While there have been bad implementation cases of FIT in Spain and Czech,there have been huge successes in other countries like Germany and UK.HPUC rightly decided to go ahead as trial and errors would be needed . It won't lead to a huge boom in solar in Hawai due to poor returns however it should lead to some boost to existing solar producers or those who were going to install solar anyway.
October 14, 2010

Czech to Indirectly Reduce Supernormal Profits of Solar Investors through new Taxes and Rents

1) Tax on Solar Subsidies - The Czech Government which used to give a tax holiday to solar energy revenues will be withdrawn and a new tax rate will be introduced. 2) No more Free Carbon Credits - The administration will generate revenue through selling the carbon credits rather than giving it free to Renewable Energy Producers.This will remove another source of return for solar investors. 3) Rent for Power Plants on Agricultural Lands - The Government also plans to impose a Fee on Solar Power Plants that are built on Agricultural Lands. Czech is facing a massive economic problem due to the increase in electricity prices at a time of Fiscal Compression.This has been mainly an outcome of huge subsidies being given to the solar energy producers.With almost 1.6 GW of Solar Energy being installed by 2010,the government had no other option than to clamp down and clawback some of the super-normal profits being given to solar investors.