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Which would make a system that subsidized the first x megawatt produced at certain rate, and then declined

How would that make sense? (And do you mean "first x megawatt-hour produced or what?) Unlike coal or nuclear, solar has almost only upfront costs (production and installation), so it stands to reason that you don't reduce the rate for already installed units. (Though inflation and cell degradation will reduce real annual income over those 20 years.)

The calculation in the blog post you link is funny: it doesn't even attempt to substract a market price from the feed-in rate, declaring all of it a "subsidy" (which, then again, is standard practice in propaganda from the German energy giants). (It would not be an easy calculation: you'd need to project future inflation, cell degradation, consider the diurnal and seasonal change of both PV output and market prices; and correct for grid use, which is zero for own consumption.) Whether even the thus the overestimated sum from that blog post is equivalent to building 6 EPRs, was already questioned by Jérôme; let me add operating, fuel and dismantling costs.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Thu Apr 29th, 2010 at 06:01:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
sigh The issue is that paying ten times as much for one kind of green electricity as for another is mad. The entire point of any intervention in the electricity market is to reduce carbon emmissions and other pollutants yes?
There is a finite amount of capital/will/industrial capacity available to do this job. In Germany, it appears to have been admirably high, but when that enormous sum of money and good will gets wasted buying insanely overpriced solar power, very little CO2 gets displaced. I used nuclear as an example because it has low kwh costs, and that puts the issue in sharp contrast, but the basic problem is that the an extremely large amount of money has been spent and future commitments agreed to for depressingly weak results. That does not aid the future cause of green power in any way, shape or form.

It would be far more reasonable policy to tax coal at a rising rate until it goes away, as that would get actual zero-carbon capacity built in the order of "cheapest first", rather than "goldplated alter of Ra"

by Thomas on Thu Apr 29th, 2010 at 06:39:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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