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Author Topic: 50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record  (Read 1717 times)

wraith808

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50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record (Via liberty voice with links to The Local and ThinkProgress)

Apocaloptimist is a good word.

Quote
At the start of June, Germany produced 50 percent of its electricity needs from solar power: a new world record. Tobias Rothacher, expert of renewable energies at Germany’s Trade and Invest, stated that what his country has done with solar power is a testament to what the renewable resource can accomplish in modern societies.

Fraunhofer ISE research institute revealed that solar panels in the eastern European country generated a record breaking 23.1 GW of electricity in one hour on June 6th. On June 9th, a national holiday, solar energy production peaked at 24.24 GW, which equalled approximately 50.6 percent of the electricity demand.

That week was unusually hot with highs of 37 C, Rothacher attributed the warm weather and the holiday as major contributors to reaching the new record. He did state that he is confident that they will be able to break a new record every few months now: saying that his company is installing more and more photovoltaic solar panels.

According to Rothacher, the critical component for the high solar energy production is the encouragement to the public of Germany to install solar panels on their homes as opposed to the construction of giant solar farms. Rothacher said 90 percent of the solar panels in the country are on individual’s rooftops. He said that solar power production increased by 34 percent in the first five months of the year and he believes that the warm weather is responsible for this.

The new record of the large amounts of solar energy being produced in Germany, 50 percent of the demand, demonstrates that the energy companies will need to develop improved storage capacity. Rothacher said that 1.4 million photovoltaic systems are generating a surplus of energy, especially on sunny days around midday. He describes that with every new solar system that is installed, the need for electricity storage solutions increases.

The new record of 50 percent of Germany’s energy demand being produced by solar means that 74 percent of all the energy produced in the country comes from renewable resources; wind power being a close second. During the record breaking afternoon, energy prices dipped into the negative for a period of time.

More at link.

Opposing view courtesy of Forbes, that doesn't know that you can be an apocaloptimist.

Shades

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Re: 50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2014, 06:32:27 PM »
True, but that was on a holiday, where demands on the grid dropped considerably. But for such a damp place on the globe it is still a very good accomplishment.

wraith808

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Re: 50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2014, 08:44:41 PM »
True, but that was on a holiday, where demands on the grid dropped considerably. But for such a damp place on the globe it is still a very good accomplishment.

Yup they did mention that as one of the factors in the quoted bit above.

Renegade

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Re: 50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2014, 08:51:24 PM »
My clairvoyance is kicking in...

I see... a sudden budget spending splurge... it's in a war room... someone is saying something about "we can bring back carpet bombing" and "let the good times roll"...

;D

Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

wraith808

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Re: 50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2014, 09:33:19 PM »
It's apocal-OPTIMIST Ren. ;)  I do think that just like Tesla, if they tried to ramp up solar production in the US, you might be right though. :(  Hence the Forbes rebuttal.

40hz

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Re: 50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2014, 09:45:16 AM »
sun.jpg

It's very good news. But hitting a 50% peak is not the same thing as getting 50% of your energy from the sun on an ongoing basis - which that headline might lead some to think.

Still...it's a start - and I'm an apocaloptimist (I just found out w/thx to Wraith for my enlightenment) so I'll take it when and where I get it. :Thmbsup:
« Last Edit: June 24, 2014, 09:54:36 AM by 40hz »

wraith808

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Re: 50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2014, 09:52:53 AM »
Some others also pointed out that 74% of Germany's power needs during that time were produced from renewable sources.  I'm sure that can be skewed both ways also... but it is progress!  :Thmbsup: 

... do I need to add 'in the right direction'?  ;D

40hz

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Re: 50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2014, 09:58:35 AM »
Nope!

It's progress period. Twenty years ago it wasn't happening at all.

The key to this stuff is realizing it's going to happen incrementally rather than by a seismic shift. Which is probably a good thing. Because rapid major change usually only occurs in response to some horrible crisis.

As long as it keeps happening, I'll be happy to +1 with the tortoise: Slow but steady wins the race.

40hz

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Re: 50 Percent of the Energy Produced in Germany Is Solar: New Record
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2014, 10:39:02 AM »
Side note: I'm really happy they're also going with a decentralized per-household approach rather than just a small group of giant sun farms.

Here in New England, we have an abundance of water power. Prior to WWII Connecticut was noted for it. There were these little unmanned generating stations all over the place with 5 or 6 foot dams on relatively small but fast rivers. After the Depression and prior to WWII however, the state (fuelled by federal project money) started building massive centralized power stations. Mostly coal fired generators located on what used to be beautiful coastline.

The argument was that the small dams were "inefficient" and lacked an economy of scale, whereas central power stations were easier to maintain and far more efficient. What fell out of the new equation was that these small stations also provided redundancy, were more robust by virtue of being decentralized, and non-polluting. But they didn't give the electric utilities the same hard-on as seeing a gigantic monster power plant with their logo on it sitting by the seashore with it's half dozen (or more) 200' stacks belching a cloud of smoke into the sky. Muy macho! I like!!!

It's that grand old smog
It's that low lying smog
You can tell by the stench and the pall...
Though it clouds our skies
And it burns our eyes,
It means there Employment for All...


Sad thing is, half of those little dams are still there and could be put back in operation with relatively little effort.

Had a school chum. His family spent their summers up in New Hampshire. His father had one of those little power dams on this huge parcel of land he owned. On a lark the old man did some research (he was a PE by trade) and gradually restored and recommissioned the thing. More as a hobby project than anything else. It wound up generating all the power he ever needed for the summer house he had built there and then some. They actually had to run it far below it's capacity because they couldn’t use anywhere near as much power as it was capable of generating. He did have a minor flap with the county regulators over it initially. All in the name of "public safety" and "fire codes" of course. But in the end (NH being the "Live Free of Die!" state) my buddy's old man won out. AFAIK that little power station is still in operation to this day.

When I was actively involved in a lot of what has since come to be called "integral urban" and "sustainable living," one of the things that used to get thrown at us "commune" and "ecology freaks" was that we were trying to "Send the country back to the stone age." (Horrors!) But that wasn't true at all. We were just trying to roll things back to the 1930s with its right-sized population and technology levels. Because right after WWII, the USA began transitioning over to its current global industrial-economic model - and stopped being self-sufficient when it came to food, water, natural resources, and energy.

Big mistake IMHO - but so it goes.  :-\
« Last Edit: June 24, 2014, 10:47:10 AM by 40hz »