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Utility-scale roundup: The days of big solar projects in the US are back


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  1. “These large solar projects are no longer driven by RPS edicts but by corporate buyers and the sheer competitive pricing of solar or solar-plus-storage compared to other generation sources.”

    This is the trend since the mega to gigawatt solar PV projects floated in the 2003 to 2007 time frame. The problem, way too much power generation during the solar PV peak generation portion of the day and no place to sell it. Curtailment of a non-fueled generation asset is wasteful and inefficient. Now smaller projects with energy storage as part of the project, creates one project with many stacked grid service applications and multiple revenue streams from one asset. It didn’t make sense to electric utilities to sign a 25 year PPA on a 500MW solar PV farm and have to “curtail” the plants output or pay another State to take the excess generation and pay ‘them’ to take the excess. Now, smaller projects, 100MWp and energy storage could be used for grid regulation, storage of excess solar PV generation during the day and use of this energy in the evening hours to service grid demands. Sooner or later the utility will figure out solar PV farm, save most of the daily generation into a large energy storage facility and use time shifted daytime non-fueled generation to service the grid at night time. The distribution of these “smaller” projects with energy storage can become the new normal generation and use electricity market.

  2. I am so glad to see solar grow. Wind farm on land are a menace in my opinion. They secretly invade a region, have land owners sign non disclosure agreements, divide a community and then won’t put up money to dismantle the turbines after the 20 year lifespan is over! We fought this in the northern Adirondack town of Parishville and Hopkinton, so far.
    Go safe quiet low to ground solar. Only drawback is takes away production of crops and hay fields.

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