Solar Quotes Blog

Coal vs Solar – Which is more space efficient?

solar and a coal fired power station

This is a guest post by Greg Bell – which was conceived in the comments section of another post on this blog.

Take it away Greg:


Some things we can say we know for sure about solar – the fuel is free, it’s quiet, and there are no moving parts. But other benefits are more controversial. Recently a claim was made to me that solar is actually more area efficient – that is, it generates more energy per hectare – than coal.

Specifically, the claim was

“The 1,600 megawatt brown coal Hazelwood Power Station and associated mine in Victoria covers 3,554 hectares. In a sunny location in Australia 20% efficient solar panels covering that area would produce more kilowatt-hours than Hazelwood’s average output.”

Let’s see if that’s true. [Continue reading…]

Australian leaders lurch further out of step on renewables

abbott and renewables

Abbott wants to stand up for poor, downtrodden, powerless coal. It’s good for humanity don’t you know. Unlike that nasty renewable stuff.

A very significant week in Australian renewable energy politics with the historic agreement between China and the United States on reducing emissions at the recent APEC summit in Beijing.

Significant for Australia because the ideological campaign against renewables (let’s call it for what it is) used to be heavily based around the fact that we were the leaders in cutting emissions while the rest of the world waited. The argument went that by taking such a leadership role, our industry was suffering. [Continue reading…]

Solar will be the world’s most popular power source by 2050

big red hand pointing down

When someone of the stature of Martin Green says the cost of solar PV technology will halve again by the next decade, you sit up and take notice. Even more so when he says solar will be the world’s most popular energy source by 2050. For the University of New South Wales’ Prof. Martin Green […]

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Are micro inverters & battery backup compatible?

3 microinverters and 2 batteries

Can you use a micro inverter off grid? Or even for grid connect with batteries? With the growth in the use of micro inverters, I’m starting to get more and more emails asking: can micro inverters be used in off grid (or hybrid) systems? The short answer is yes they can! In fact a number […]

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Is coal now more expensive than solar?

pile of coal

Not-so-strange bedfellows Greg “Smiley” Hunt and Big Clive emerged hand in hand after negotiating the “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap” (sorry “Direct Action”) legislation earlier this week. Meanwhile a less publicised news article revealed the dirty truth behind the future, or otherwise, of fossil fuel exports to one of our major markets. That truth is […]

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Are millions of solar roofs making solar farms pointless?

solar power station

Utility scale solar, or solar farms, are fields of PV panels which generate electricity that is fed directly into the grid.  Currently we don’t have much of this in Australia.  Over 99% of our solar capacity is point of use which is mostly on rooftops and the juice it does produce is first used to power the […]

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Forget “real 20 percent”, what are the real benefits of going solar?

God forbid that pesky wind and solar breaches 20% !

  The dust continues to swirl on one of the most divisive energy issues in recent years — the government’s attempted slashing of the RET to the so-called “real 20 percent”. We’ll discuss this but really, is this the debate we should be having in this day and age? We’re going to focus on the […]

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LDK Solar Bankruptcy. Who will be next?

LDK solar logo

Another large solar panel manufacturer appears to be in serious financial trouble. Bloomberg is reporting that LDK Solar, the world’s largest producer of wafers by capacity, has put it’s US operations into bankruptcy with over a billion dollars of debt.

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Nine in ten look to solar to beat rising electricity bills: report

rising bills

An Ernst and Young utilities survey report released this week has highlighted the battle ordinary Australians are having with their rising electricity bills. The study also found over 90 percent of those surveyed would like to switch to solar power.

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The Huge Companies That Rely On Commerical Solar

comercial solar infographic

Whilst commercial solar systems in Australia are steadily growing in number despite pushback from many electricity networks, the USA is forging ahead with enormous commercial systems.  America’s biggest companies, like Wal*mart, Costco and Macy’s are relying on solar power to reduce their bills. Here’s a great snapshot from the Sustainable Energy Industry Association which has some seriously […]

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