News of the year 2014

Date: 14.03.2014


Shunfeng confirms second delay to Wuxi Suntech deal

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 17:13 (PV-Tech)

Shunfeng Photovoltaics has announced a second delay to its acquisition of Wuxi Suntech. Read more

Sungrow Power partners on two 50MW PV projects in Gansu Province

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 13:04 (PV-Tech)

Major PV inverter manufacturer, Sungrow Power Supply is partnering on plans for two PV power plants totalling around 100MW in two regions within Gansu Province, China. Read more

Japan FiT to fall modestly in line with expectations

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 12:32 (PV-Tech)

Japan’s feed-in tariff (FiT) from 1 April looks almost certain to be set at ¥32/kWh for commercial customers and at ¥37/kWh for residential PV system owners, falling by approximately 11% from 2013 levels. Read more

GCL-Poly grows revenues, narrows losses in 2013

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 8:52 (Solarserver)

GCL-Poly Energy Holdings Co. Ltd. (Hong Kong) has released results for 2013, reporting a 14% increase in revenues to USD 4.16 billion and a net loss of USD 72.7 million. This is a significant improvement from the company's heavy 2012 losses. GCL's dramatic increases in sales volumes of both wafers and polysilicon were largely offset by falling prices. However, the company reports cost reduction and technical achievements in both polysilicon and wafer production, as well as success with its solar photovoltaic (PV) project business. Read more

Thermal Power/Heating

California Flexes Its Solar Muscles

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 19:31 (Renewable Energy World)

At 1:41 PM on Saturday March 8, California hit a new record of solar energy output of nearly 4.1 GW. That narrowly beat out the previous record of 3.9 GW, which was set the day before. It's also more than double the peak solar output from last June, and quadruple the output from the summer of 2012. Coincident demand for the new record was about 22.6 GW, meaning at that peak solar served about 18 percent of demand, roughly enough to power three million homes. All of that data is from California ISO (CAISO), which reported the new mark earlier this week. Read more

Minnesota creates methodology to value electricity from solar PV

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 17:57 (Solarserver)

Regulators in the U.S. state of Minnesota have approved a formula for utilities to determine the value of electricity from solar photovoltaic (PV) generation, as the first state in the nation to do so. The “Value of Solar” methodology includes avoided transmission, fuel and health and environmental costs, including the social cost of carbon. Read more

Why the Potential for Grid Defection Matters

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 16:51 (Renewable Energy World)

Two weeks ago, Rocky Mountain Institute, HOMER Energy, and CohnReznick Think Energy released "The Economics of Grid Defection," which assesses when and where distributed solar-plus-battery systems could reach economic parity with the electric grid, creating the possibility for defection of utility customers. Read more

Solar finance event draws heavy hitters to London

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 16:35 (PV-Tech)

Investors representing trillions of dollars of assets and multibillion dollar renewable energy portfolios gathered in London on Thursday to explore the solar energy’s investment opportunity. Read more

A Look at Australia's Solar Power Rebate System

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 15:13 (Renewable Energy World)

Solar rebates have been making news the world over, providing home- and small business owners in Australia, America, the UK and even South Africa with an added incentive to reduce their carbon footprints and live sustainably. Read more

Meet Solar’s Imaginary Friend, Reactive Power

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 15:09 (Renewable Energy World)

Utilities deliver both active (or real) power and reactive (or imaginary) power along their distribution lines. Real power does the actual work when you flip on a light switch.  Certain energy loads, such as motors and refrigerators, include energy storage elements that periodically need to reverse the direction of energy flow. This electric power Read more

GT introduces novel solar PV cell metallization and interconnection technology

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 15:06 (Solarserver)

GT Advanced Technologies Inc. (Merrimack, New Hampshire, U.S.) has introduced a new technology for cell metallization and interconnection that it says will provide substantial savings in both the manufacture and installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) modules. GT's “Merlin” technology includes a flexible grid to replace silver bus bars, which it says will improve conversion efficiency as well as reducing the expense of silver paste. Read more

And the Future of Residential Solar Is…Up for Grabs

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 14:18 (Renewable Energy World)

Get ready — there is a revolution in residential solar going on. From financing models, solar leases, community (group buy) to owners of multi-unit housing complexes potentially becoming independent power producers, there is a changing of the business model guard. Think of it, the world may be a major storage innovation away from disconnecting from the utility grid. Do not kid yourself, there will be utility pushback but there will also be utility participation in the vein of, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. Read more

Japan proposes very slight feed-in tariff cuts for solar PV

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 14:12 (Solarserver)

An expert panel has proposed minimal reductions to Japan's feed-in tariff on April 1st, 2014, the beginning of the nation's fiscal year. Under the proposal, feed-in tariff rates for PV plants larger than 10kW will fall 11% to JPY 32 (USD 0.32) per kWh, and decline only 2.6% to JPY 37 (USD 0.37) per kWh for PV plants smaller than 10 kW. Read more

Video: Beware the temptation of EU-China trade deal loopholes

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 13:45 (PV-Tech)

Those looking to invest in the construction of solar farms in Europe should be wary of attempting to circumvent the EU-China solar trade agreement, a major EPC and consultancy firm has warned. Read more

Fire at REC Solar’s Singapore’s manufacturing facility

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 12:49 (PV-Tech)

A small fire broke out at REC Solar’s manufacturing facilities in Tuas, Singapore this morning. Read more

NPD Solarbuzz: Top 10 solar PV markets show shifts in global demand

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 8:55 (Solarserver)

NPD Solarbuzz Inc. (Santa Clara, California, U.S.) has published a new report which finds very different circumstances in the top 10 global PV markets which accounted for over 80% of end-market demand in 2013. The largest trend noted by Solarbuzz is the shift in demand away from Europe and towards Asia, with Japan, China and Thailand representing the fastest-growing markets during the year. This is contrasted with falling demand in Germany, Italy and France. Read more

Italy met 4.8% of electricity demand with solar PV in February

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 8:48 (Solarserver)

According to the latest figures from grid operator Terna (Rome), Italian solar photovoltaic (PV) plants produced 1.19 terawatt-hours (TWh) of electricity in February 2014, to meet 4.8% of electricity demand. This is an increase from 4.6% in February 2013, and 2.8% in January 2014. Over the full year 2013, Italy met 7.0% of its electricity demand with PV, the highest portion of any mid-sized to large nation in the world. Read more


Norway oil fund to invest in renewables

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 17:54 (PV-Tech)

Norway’s oil-generated sovereign wealth fund is to see a shift to investment in renewable energy. Read more

Wind Energy

EU Power Sector Amiable, But Wind Chiefs Under no Illusions

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 9:22 (Renewable Energy World)

Joking with someone in the GE Power and Water Renewable Energy team at the European Wind Energy Association event in Barcelona this week, I asked her if those on the conventional power side and those on her own unit sat at opposite ends of the GE HQ cafeteria in Schenctady, New York. Her answer reinforced a consensus I hear a lot in energy sectors. Read more


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Hydrogen/Fuel Cell

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Geo Thermal/Heat Pump

Can Gigawatts of Geothermal Save the Salton Sea?

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 21:32 (Renewable Energy World)

Famously known for its rise and fall as a resort destination in the 50s and 60s, The Salton Sea area in California has struggled to find support for revitalization efforts. After all, the lake’s high salinity makes it nearly impossible for sea life to prosper, and as water levels continue to diminish, the exposed sea floor further contaminates the arid, stale air. However, there is one industry that is eager to take advantage of what seemingly little the area has to offer — geothermal. Under the surface of that toxic seabed are thousands of megawatts of potential. Read more

Energy Policy/Climate/CO2

Renewable Energy Brings Out Some Extreme Nimbyism

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 21:15 (Renewable Energy World)

You may have heard of extreme preppers. These are people who spend a large portion of their time preparing themselves, their homes and their families for what they believe is an inevitable disaster resulting from an economic meltdown, the spread of a deadly virus, climate change or another catastrophic event.  And hey, you never know, in the end th Read more

US$100 million fund launched to invest in African renewables

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 17:38 (PV-Tech)

The African Renewable Energy Fund (AREF), established to support Sub-Saharan African independent power producers (IPPs), has closed with US$100 million in committed capital to support small to medium-scale renewable energy projects. Read more

Merton Rule to be retained after renewables industry petition

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 17:25 (Solarpowerportal)

The government is to preserve a key planning rule that enables local authorities to secure on-site renewable energy generation in new buildings. Read more

Merkel's Green Push Blows Away German Coal-Power Profits

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 15:03 (Renewable Energy World)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel's campaign to limit climate change with an energy system based on renewable sources is cutting into profits of companies that still provide 57 percent of the power that keeps Europe's biggest economy humming. Read more

Dragon Energy Solutions installs largest UK sports stadium PV array in South Wales

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 13:50 (Solarpowerportal)

PV developer Dragon Energy Solutions has successfully added a 250kWp PV system on the training facility at the Parc y Scarlets rugby stadium located in Llanelli, South Wales. Read more

Frost & Sullivan: Political instability is limiting renewable energy investments in North Africa

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 9:09 (Solarserver)

Frost & Sullivan (Mountain View, California, U.S.) has released a new report which finds that political instability and delayed implementation of electricity sector reforms are limiting investments in North Africa's significant pipeline of renewable energy projects. The report notes that the region is seeing sharply increasing demand for power, driven by multiple factors including growing economies. And while Frost & Sullivan expects structural reforms including the establishment of independent regulators and change to fuel and electricity subsidies to be a priority, development is dependent upon the transitions taking place in the region. Read more

Call to action: Going 100% renewable is a matter of political will

Friday, 3.14.2014 - 9:06 (Solarserver)

Emphasizing that the only real barrier is a lack of political will, ambassadors of the 100% Renewable Energy Campaign have issued a call to policy makers to transition towards fossil-free societies. The call was issued by ambassadors Bill McKibben, David Suzuki, Hans-Josef Fell, Jeremy Leggett and Ulrich Kelber. The ambassadors note that not only is a stop to greenhouse gas emissions urgently necessary, but that solutions exist, citing the communities in four continents that have pledged to go 100% renewable. Read more


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