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The tipping point in Germany and Japan came once households twigged that they could undercut their unloved utilities. Credit Lyonnais believes the rest of the world will soon join the stampede.

Grrr. Households can "undercut" their utilities because the law says that they can get more money from solar-generated electricity. This is not about brave markets/entrepreneur vs stodgy bureaucracies, this is about active regulation that imposes subsidized prices for solar energy.

I knew there had to be a catch:

Not coincidentally, Japan, Germany and the US are the countries that have the largest programmes in terms of government support to the PV industry. In Japan government rebates under an 11-year solar development programme now exceed US$ 1.5 billion and in Germany, producers of solar energy receive a subsidy of over EUR 40/MWh. Even in Southern California with abundant sun resource, at least a US$ 20/MWh subsidy is needed to make sun energy competitive. Not accidentally do the three countries with the largest government support programmes also house the biggest manufacturers.

The share of grid-connected PV has been increasing through the past decade. It reached 82% in 2004, from approximately 30% in 1994. This trend is mainly due to large government supported programmes in Germany, Japan and in the US, focusing on PV power generation in urban and suburban environment.



Truth unfolds in time through a communal process.
by marco on Thu Feb 22nd, 2007 at 07:04:02 PM EST
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