Solar Incentives Rebates are at Their Limits
Potentially bad news if you were planning to install solar panels on your home sometime this year—Detroit, Los Angeles and the entire state of Michigan have put a halt on residential solar incentives and other areas are likely to follow.
Energy incentives are always hot commodities and demand is typically high, but demands have exceeded funds before the mid-point of 2011.
Los Angeles’s SolarCurrents program was launched by the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) with a limit of 5 megawatts and the department had to stop taking applications in April because it was already fully subscribed.
DTE Energy, the municipal utility that collaborated with the LADWP for the SolarCurrents pilot program, did not project a timeline for its residential portion.
“One of the things we wanted to learn was what kind of demand was out there, subsidized of not,” said DTE Energy spokesperson Scott Simmons. “We know that there are a lot of people that want to get off the grid, and as far as total installations, in our service areas, there were about 500 [installed through SolarCurrents]. It’s pretty much what we expected."
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Mark Hildebrandt, owner of Michigan solar panel installer Sunventrix LLC voiced concerns over the subsidies elimination’s affect on the economy.
"The sad part is that it created so many jobs in Michigan," Hildebrant told Annarbor.com. "This is all going to change quite dramatically because every installer who was working with this program had lots of opportunities to sell solar. Sure, there will be people who are doing it for environmental reasons and they just want to do it to feel good, etc. But the financial reason is not as good as it used to be."
W3 Energy signs technical operations contract with Luxcara
The wind farm, located outside of Piteå in northern Sweden, plans to have 137 wind turbines on full installation, with an expected capacity of more than 750 MW.
W3 Energy will be responsible for onsite technical operations management and local accounting services as well as operation and maintenance of the electrical infrastructure and transformer stations.
"This contract strengthens our position as a key player in onsite technical operations management. The Önusberget wind farm is the largest single-site wind power project in Europe and we are proud that Luxcara gives us the trust to support with the operational management of their investment", says W3 Energy's COO André Sjöström.
"The contract with Luxcara is extremely important to us and means that we take a firm grip on our home region. This contract allows us to continue to grow and we plan to continue to recruit in Piteå, Umeå, and Skellefteå."
The new contract with Luxcara means that W3 Energy manages approximately 15% of the renewable energy produced in Sweden and lays the foundation for continuing to build growth in other regions.
"Luxcara is an internationally respected asset manager in renewable energy, with high-quality investment criteria and a strong focus on diversity and sustainability. We share their view on sustainability, with a strong focus on environmental as well as social and ethical aspects", stated W3 Energy's CEO Pär Dunder.
Its past engagement with W3 combined with their track record from other large projects and their local experience were decisive factors for choosing W3 Energy, according to Philip Sander, Managing Director of Luxcara.
Global Wind Day will be held tomorrow (June 15), to promote wind's potential to reshape our energy systems, decarbonise economies and boost jobs and economic growth.
Onshore wind is now the cheapest form of new power generation in most of Europe, and offshore wind is not far behind with costs having fallen over 60% in three years, according to WindEurope.
Adrian Timbus, ETIPWind Chairman, said: “Wind energy can help electrify 75% of Europe’s energy demand and thereby deliver climate neutrality by 2050. But we must prioritise the development of the necessary technologies: next generation onshore and offshore turbines, electrification solutions for transport and for industry, and electrolysers for renewable hydrogen.”
Poland leads Europe's wind growth
Poland saw Europe's biggest increase in wind turbine energy production between 2000 and 2018, according to a Save on Energy study, and produced the fourteenth highest percentage of electricity by wind power overall in 2018.
Czechia has seen second highest percentage increase in electricity production generated by wind power. Despite having the second lowest proportion of electricity generated by wind power in 2018, the country previously produced the lowest percentage overall in 2000, so it has still seen a significant increase in wind turbine energy production over the years.
France has the third largest increase in wind turbine energy production throughout the period studied, with electricity production generated by wind power increasing from 0.009% in 2000, to 4.9% in 2018, while neighbouring Belgium experienced the fourth highest increase in wind energy production, with almost 10% of electricity produced being generated by wind power in 2018, compared to 0.02% in 2000.
Although Ukraine boasted the lowest percentage of electricity produced by wind turbines in 2018 (0.7%), the country had the fifth largest percentage increase since 2000, since only 0.003% of electricity production was generated by wind turbines.
By comparison, Denmark, Luxembourg and Spain each ranked as having the lowest percentage increases when it came to the percentage of electricity production generated by wind turbines between 2000 and 2018, and they lag considerably behind other European nations.
The EU wants wind to account for 50% of the continent's electricity by 2050. The Romanian Wind Energy Association recently launched a Code of Good Practice for renewable energy.
Top 10 countries in Europe for wind growth