It’s that time of year again: holidays! Until 2018 begins, we try to set aside some extra time for family, eat delicious meals together, exchange gifts and generally close out the year with good wishes and good intentions for the next year.
While Renewable Energy World is a business-to-business publication for the global renewable energy industry, we occasionally get press releases and notifications about interesting inventions that are designed for the general public. And as the holidays approach, we like to bring them to you.
“Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way,” Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina. In the solar industry, strong markets are alike in that they have incentives, subsidies and/or mandates to drive growth and adoption but also a fair amount of political and economic risk and every weak or collapsing market is alike in that it no longer has incentives, subsidies and/or mandates to drive it and its political and/or economic risk has become a reality.
A weak market is the mirror image of a strong one that is, everything is seen in reverse. In solar, a leading market share receives more notice than the low-to-negative margins that go along with it. For example, solar lease etc., company Sunrun is being touted for passing SolarCity in terms of its market share even as it racks — pardon the pun — up losses. The company reported losses from operations of $130.7 million and net losses of $180.9 million for nine months of 2017. True, the company lost less money than it did in 2016, however this should not be spun as a positive.
China, the world’s biggest carbon emitter, is poised to install a record amount of solar-power capacity this year, prompting researchers to boost forecasts as much as 80 percent.
About 54 gigawatts will be put in place this year, Bloomberg New Energy Finance said Monday, raising a forecast of more than 30 gigawatts made in July. That amount of additional capacity would likely surpass all the solar energy generated in Japan in 2017.
The Big Embrace: Electric Utilities Accept Wind and Solar as Reliable Sources, Plan for the Long Haul
Despite the Environmental Protection Agency’s announcement that the Clean Power Plan is being repealed, the attractive cost of renewables and improvements in battery storage technology mean that wind- and solar-generated power are here to stay.
Last week, both houses of the U.S. congress passed versions of a tax reform bill. As readers might recall, tax reform was one of the platforms on which Trump ran for president and getting a major tax reform bill passed would be a big win for him. Each version of the bill has implications for the renewable energy industry but the wind industry is particularly worried about the House bill.