solar station in Texas

Greetings and welcome to the workweek! Here’s your best in solar, a weekly roundup of Commercial Solar Guy’s reporting from the previous week. This week we see solar and wind continuing their trend towards world dominance: Indiana spurns a gas plant proposal in favor of wind and solar, and a Department of Energy report confirms growth in both sectors. As with any major change, there are naysayers, and we saw a Los Angeles Union strongly oppose the city’s conversion to 100% clean energy.  Developers should take note that demand charges and time of use billing will help to motivate energy storage buyers. And finally, we have your weekly hardware update full of inverters and, well, all that other stuff.

Questions about anything you see here? Drop a line to the Commercial Solar Guy himself… we promise he’s friendly!

example of a solar + storage project

Demand charges, energy arbitrage and behind the meter energy storage payback periods

Research done by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory on energy storage shows that time of use billing allows for energy arbitrage opportunities, while demand charges have a more widely available opportunity. Both have the potential to motivate energy storage buyers, and developers should consider this when selling storage + solar projects. Read the full article >


Solar farm in California

Is solar power the keeper of gas and coal?

Los Angeles regulators have put aside a vote on a sub-2¢/kWh solar power project due to union pressure, because of potential job losses in the climate fight as well the closing of three gas plants in the city. A local union contends that moving Los Angeles towards 100% clean energy would mean higher electricity bills and the loss of high-paying jobs. Read the full article >


Indiana Solar Farm

Indiana gas plant spurned – wind, solar and storage respond

Vectren’s 2016 proposal to replace coal with a gas plant was declined as too large and financially risky for the small utility, requiring a new bid – which recently came in showing wind, solar and storage dominating the list of offers. This trade of solar and wind for gas is indicative of a larger trend moving towards clean energy. Read the full article >


solar inverter

Yotta gotta lotta $$, module pricing down, insurance for C&I, SMA’s 4.6 MW inverter, more!

As SPI approaches and hardware announcements speed up – we’ll work to keep you up! NREL speeds up ultra-efficiency solar cell manufacturing, SolaRack has a new rooftop attachment seal technique – and it uses 18% less product, APA Solar Racking’s Titan system doing well this year, and more! This is your weekly hardware update, and as promised, it is jam-packed with enough hardware for the biggest nerd among us. Read the full article >


solar station in Texas

Department of Energy shows wind and solar power will dominate fossils

A Department of Energy report on wind energy showed nuggets of research on solar power – including a 280 GW interconnection queue and continued declines in pricing, as well solar’s encroachment on wind’s Midwest territory. And while solar and wind might enjoy a mild sort of rivalry, it is their combined potential that will eventually end fossil fuel dominance. Read the full article >