Utilities have taken on the practice of applying standby and fixed cost charges specific to solar PV for customers choosing to go solar as a means to recover costs resulting from net energy metering (NEM).
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While PV modules and other hardware costs have dropped significantly over recent years, non-hardware soft costs have also fallen, but not nearly as sharply.
Looking at 4 variable generation technologies (wind, single-axis tracking PV, CSP with no storage, & CSP with thermal energy storage), the authors look at the benefits of mitigation measures.
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory releases their new report "Comparing Photovoltaic (PV) Costs and Deployment Drivers in the Japanese and U.S. Residential and Commercial Markets".
With a projected growth rate of 300% in the US over the next four years, distributed solar presents a number of challenges to the current distribution grid. This report from GTM Research details the new power electronics equipment used to address these challenges and provides descriptions of key markets, financing activity in the sector and state level market forecasting.
In a recent report, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory summarizes the Integrated Resource Plans of major Western U.S. utilities to assess their assumptions about future changes within the electricity markets they serve.
A new study from the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) finds that operating costs associated with additional power plant cycling caused by the integration of renewables to the grid are negligible when compared to fuel costs offset by displacing fossil fuels with renewable energy.
In its recent report on solar integration within the Hawaiian grid, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory finds that distributed and utility scale solar can be reliably accommodated by electrical grids on Maui and Oahu at penetration rates of 20%.
A recent NREL report finds that concentrating solar power systems (CSP) with thermal energy storage (TES) provide value to the grid that is $30/MWh to $51/MWh higher than conventional base load generation. The analysis focused on grid performance in California under a 33% renewable scenario.