Cutting costs has been the key to solar’s rapid expansion this decade. The lion’s share of cost reductions in the solar industry has come from reductions in module prices. The $4 per watt you’d have paid in 2006 for modules alone gets you the entire residential solar system installed today.
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From the press release:
Is it politics at play? Or simply a case of sloppy drafting? Whichever the case, West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has a tough choice to make in the next few days. Legislation now on his desk, HB 2201, could jeopardize the future of rooftop solar in the state by rewriting West Virginia’s net-metering policies. Regardless of the motives of the bill’s authors, pure or clandestine, we strongly urge Gov. Tomblin to do the right thing – veto the bill and start over.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Calling it “unfair to families, businesses and churches,” the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) is urging West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to veto HB 2201, which could jeopardize the future of rooftop solar in the state by rewriting West Virginia’s net-metering policies. Rhone Resch, SEIA president and CEO, said the legislation needs to be revised before becoming law:
WASHINGTON, DC - A new study released today by the NC Clean Energy Technology Center finds that investing in a 5 kilowatt solar system can be a better deal than investing in a stock market index fund in 46 of America’s 50 largest cities.
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).
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.
Lawrence Berkley National Lab's "Tracking the Sun" is an annual report that tracks and analyzes installed prices of solar PV. The report analyzes more than 300,000 individual residential, commercial and utility scale PV systems in 33 states.
A recent joint report from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory finds that installed PV system prices in Japan are 6% lower than U.S. prices in the residential sector, and 20% lower than U.S. prices in the small commercial sector. Some of this difference is attributed to lower soft costs in Japan.
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) recently released a report that breaks down the ‘soft costs’ associated with the installation of residential and commercial photovoltaic systems in greater detail than ever before, with detailed looks at customer acquisition and system design costs, as well as permitting, inspection and interconnection costs.