Clean Power

Published on June 19th, 2012 | by Zachary Shahan


5 Solar Myths Busted (Infographic)

June 19th, 2012 by  

One of the good folks at PV Magazine recently dropped me a note about a cool new solar infographic the team there created. While I generally love to share a decent solar infographic, this one created by folks focused on the industry every day is better than most, as it bust 5 common myths that anyone who works in this industry runs into all too often. Additionally, rather than focusing on the myths, it focuses on the facts, a good messaging tactic.

We’ve written on some of the source materials before (such as #5 and #6) in the past, and might write on some of the others in the future. Additionally, we try to set the record straight on these 5 points below any chance we get. But sometimes nothing does it like an infographic. Check this one out and share it with friends!

Infographic: Setting the solar story straight
Solar myths infographic by pv magazine

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About the Author

is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species) with the power of the typed word. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor, but he's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession, Solar Love, and Bikocity. Zach is recognized globally as a solar energy, electric car, and energy storage expert. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in.

  • Renewable energy at its best

  • Think of all the workplaces in the USA which have an unused roof area of more than an acre (often many acres) and then imagine that surface covered in solar panels. Just think of how much energy that would produce! And all the excess energy could be put into storage to use later, for transportation for example!

    • Bob_Wallace

      As the price of solar comes down more and more corporate pencil pushers are going to start to understand that a roof not covered with solar panels hurts their bottom line.

      And then many are going to realize that they could create another profit stream by roofing their parking lots.

      We’re  getting close to the price point at which not having large solar arrays will make your company less profitable and less competitive.

      If we get saved from climate change it may be because renewables will have become too inexpensive to ignore and EVs will become so much cheaper to own and drive than gasmobiles.

  • Pingback: Cool Green Morning: Wednesday, June 20 | Cool Green Science: The Conservation Blog of The Nature Conservancy()

  • Rover419 Dp

    I have lived off grid over ten years. THANK YOU

    • Bob_Wallace

      Newby…    ;o)

      Makes one realize how a renewable grid could work, doesn’t it?

      • @Rover: Bob’s been off grid for 20 i think 😀 that’s why the cheeky response 😀

  • John Locke

    Just one note on this fantastic info-graphic, the first subtitle gives a nice little prediction as to what solar will cost in the future. Before I criticize it, can anyone tell me what it’s based on or how I can find that info? Thanks 

    • Bob_Wallace

      Panel price is dropping rapidly and promises to keep on dropping.  We just saw a thin-film manufacturer claim that they will be producing at $0.30/watt.  

      Installation costs in the US are way too high.  We’re somewhere around $5.60/watt for rooftop while Germany is down to $2.40/watt or less.  There’s nothing unique to Germany that makes it cheaper to install solar.  They use the same stuff and the same amount of labor.  Expect cost trimming here as our installers get more efficient.

      $2/watt seems quite doable in the next few years.  That would make the LCOE of rooftop $0.09/kWh for much of the US, even cheaper in the sunnier parts.

    • Bob_Wallace

      Greentech Media has a new article up which is reporting $4.44/watt in the US, 1st Qtr. 2012.  Germany averaged $2.24/watt, 2nd Qtr. 2012.

      72% of Germany’s installations are rooftop (as opposed to cheaper to install large array).  That makes their average price even more impressive.

      US breakdown…
      “Residential system prices fell by 4.8 percent from Q4 2011 to Q1 2012, with the national average installed price falling from $6.18 per watt to $5.89 per watt. Non-residential system prices fell by 6 percent quarter to quarter, from $4.92 per watt to $4.63 per watt. Utility system prices declined for the eighth consecutive quarter in a row, dropping from $3.20 per watt in Q4 2011 to $2.90 per watt in Q1 2012. ”

      At $2.24/watt and a panel price of about $0.90/watt balance of system (BoS) costs are running around $1.34/watt in Germany while ours in the US are more like $3.54/watt. 

      There is something seriously wrong about that. 

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