Soft costs of solar: The final frontier of utility LCOE reduction?

In this op-ed for pv magazine, KiloNewton Founder and CEO John Williamson looks at both the importance of reducing soft costs and the likely paths to get there.

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How gold-plating the grid blocks solar: an interview with Vote Solar’s Ed Smeloff

Unnecessary grid investments raise costs for all customers, displace solar and distributed solutions, and could be unfairly charged to solar customers. Vote Solar’s director of grid integration Ed Smeloff shares his insights in this pv magazine interview.

All I want for Christmas is a 90% efficient solar panel

NovaSolix hopes to use carbon nanotubes to capture a broader portion of the sun’s electromagnetic spectrum, a process they hope will yield a 90% efficient solar cell at a tenth of the cost of modern solar modules.

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Renewables reduced wholesale power costs by $5.7 billion in Texas

A recent report puts numbers to the power of wind and solar to reduce wholesale prices in ERCOT. And there is a lot more coming.

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BNEF: U.S. module prices seeing “aggressive” reductions

The analytics firm expects the price of mono-PERC modules to fall to $0.37 per watt by the end of the year, despite the 30% Section 201 tariffs.

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Module prices have fallen by up to 25% so far this year

According to a Q3 report by EnergyTrend, monocrystalline module prices have fallen almost 20% this year, while those for polycrystalline modules have dropped by more than 25%. Increased consolidation among manufacturers and developers is expected to occur in China, and the global solar market, with more merger deals, plans for capacity reductions, and even factory closures.

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EnergySage finds $236 million tax on solar due to Section 201 tariffs

The online solar marketplace describes the tariffs as a tax on solar, and notes that both the finding of injury and the tariffs themselves drove up prices.

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The South takes the lead in utility-scale solar as interconnection queues swell to 188 GW (w/charts)

As a further sign that solar is going mainstream across the United States, a new report by Lawrence Berkeley National Labs finds that southeastern states hosted 40% of the utility-scale solar installed nationally in 2017. Interconnection queues have swelled to 188.5 GW of utility solar capacity, eight times more than installed capacity.

Data suggests collapse of PV module imports in the wake of Section 201

Newly released EIA data shows overall module shipments falling by 2/3 in the second quarter of 2018, while pre-tariff prices remained relatively steady.

Tri-State could save $600 million by switching from coal to renewables

A study finds that “just the operating costs of many existing coal assets” now exceed total costs for new solar and wind power in the Mountain West. The Tri-State utility, for example, could save $600 million by 2030 by phasing out five coal units in favor of solar, wind and purchases of wholesale capacity and power.

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