The German government will apparently start subsidising solar power storage from April onwards according to local media Frankfurter Rundschau. The multi-million program is supposed to nurture the technology development as well as act as a springboard for smaller scale storage. Peter Altmaier, the German Environment Minister had already promised at least €50 million.
General Solar News
Cities keep sprawling and arable farm land keeps shrinking. But Sweden is building a new element into this equation – a skyscraper farm.
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WESTERN Australia looks set to host the country’s first ever power station utilising Solar Updraft Technology, with a project scheduled to get underway in the state’s Midwest.
Perth-based Hyperion Energy is currently seeking regulatory approvals to build a 200 megawatt Solar Updraft Tower (SUT) on 127,000 hectares surrounding the township of Tuckanarra, in the Midwest region of Western Australia. Hyperion says the 1,000m high tower, if it was built today, would be the tallest structure in the world.
Australia’s plan to tax carbon emissions cleared its final political hurdle on Tuesday but industry groups remain critical of the scheme, arguing it’s too expensive and will deliver few benefits to the wider economy, or succeed in cutting pollution.
The recent media hype about moves by the Australian Energy Regulator to ‘slash power bills’ is at odds with new analysis suggesting that electricity prices may double between 2011 and 2017.
THE cost of solar power in parts of NSW has for the first time crept below that of coal-fired electricity – seen as a key tipping point for the expansion of renewable energy.
The Clean Energy Future Plan will see carbon priced at $23 per tonne from 1 July 2012, rising by 2.5 per cent each year during a three-year fixed price period until 1 July 2015, when the mechanism will transition to an emissions trading scheme with a price determined by the market.
This is really your last chance to get the 47cents feed in tariff for ten years rather than 27 cents that is offered after June 30th!
To be eligible for the 47cents feed in tariff you must sign up before the 30th of June 2011. Your system must then be installed before September 30th 2011. For that reason we can only take so many installs and positions are filling fast. At the rate that things are moving we are likely to be full before the June 30th deadline. The time to enquire about a system is now before you miss out! We look forward to being about to fit you a quality system before the deadline and look forward to hearing from you soon.
The Energy Farm team.
TWO months after the explosions and radiation leaks at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan, the prime minister, Naoto Kan, has announced that the country will not build any new reactors
GREG Combet will today move to ease average household power price rises by about $50 a year by deepening cuts to incentives for people who install solar panels on their roofs.
The Climate Change Minister is expected to announce another scaling back of the solar credits scheme — the second such move by the government in six months — which will see the average rebate to households installing a 1.5 kilowatt system in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth or Adelaide fall from $6200 to $3720.
Today’s announcement, which comes as the government becomes increasingly concerned about the impact of rising cost-of-living pressures on its electoral stocks, is expected to save householders between $25 and $35 next year. This is on top of changes announced last December that were expected to save $12 a year.
This will be achieved by lowering the amount of high-cost power that electricity retailers must buy under the government’s renewable energy target. As it moves to confront cost-of-living pressures, the government will also today announce it will ask state and territory governments to make sure their feed-in tariffs “do not impose an unjustifiable burden on electricity consumers”.
Mr Combet will argue the scale-back was vital in light of continued growth in the industry and its impact on power prices.
But the government will honour existing written contracts to install small-scale solar panels made under current arrangements. Solar panels are granted renewable energy certificates based on the amount of power they produce. Electricity retailers must purchase the certificates at $40 each under the government’s amended RET.
Under the solar credits scheme, householders are eligible for an upfront payment worth five times the value of certificates their solar panels will produce.
That was to have been scaled back to four times from July 1 under changes announced in December but the scale-back will be deepened today when the government declares the multiple will be cut to three from July 1.
The move will hasten the phase-out of the scheme. The multiple will fall from three to two from July 1, next year and then revert to one from July 1, 2013.
Mr Combet will argue that strong demand for solar panels had continued despite December’s announcement, fuelled by declining system costs, the strong Australian dollar and economy as state and territory feed-in tariff schemes.
He will also argue the generous support for solar panels has contributed to a fall in the installation of solar hot water heaters. The drop in the multiplier will help reduce the oversupply of renewable energy certificates.
Under the solar credits scheme solar panel installation has ballooned. The number of installations supported by the RET grew from 15,000 in 2008 to more than 60,000 last year and 120,000 last year.
The Australian also understands the government has been concerned that the solar panel scheme was favouring affluent home owners, while renters and lower-income earners were subsidising the scheme through higher power prices.