Thursday, March 7, 2013

Solar Increasingly Sustainable Even Without Subsidies

According to a new analysis by Deutsche Bank, the global solar market will be self sustaining by the end of 2014. As many who supported renewable energy subsidies have argued, they are a short term measure to help fledgling industries grow to a size where they no longer needing subsidies to continue performing. The report showed that roof top solar has strong demand in India, China, Britain, Germany, India, and the United States. Grid parity has already been achieved in India, Italy, Germany.

Deutsche bank points to strong demand in subsidised markets such as Japan, the UK. In the US, the introduction of favourable legislation, including giving solar installations the same status as real estate investment trusts, strong pipelines in Africa and the Middle east, and unexpectedly strong demand in countries such as Mexico and Caribbean nations means that its forecasts for the year are likely to rise.

A UBS report concluded that an “unsubsidized solar revolution” was in the works, “Thanks to significant cost reductions and rising retail tariffs, households and commercial users are set to install solar systems to reduce electricity bills – without any subsidies.”

The Macquarie Group argued that costs for rooftop solar in Germany have fallen so that even with subsidy cuts “solar installations could continue at a torrid pace.”

In America, solar power installations were strong over the course of the last couple of years despite the fact that the price of solar power systems continued to plunge. The growth in American solar energy installations is due in part to third party leasing agreements.

The cost of manufacturing solar panels in China is expected to drop to an all-new low of 42 cents per watt in 2015. Power generated from solar is predicted to undercut that produced by both coal and most forms of natural gas within a decade.

Based on their observations of activities in the solar space, Deutsche Bank has increased its forecast for solar demand in 2013 to 30 gigawatts which represents a 20 percent increase over 2012.

© 2013, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.

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