Florida-lots of sun, little Solar Electric... Germany, little sun lots of Solar- Why?

By
Real Estate Agent with energreen

Florida is the Sunshine State.  Germany is the world leader in Solar Photovoltaic.  Florida has way more sunshine than Germany, and Germany has way,way,way more solar electric installed.  Florida has met with German officials and have learned of-  Feed-In-Tariffs (FIT).

Presently, Gainesville,Fl is considering implementing a FIT  program.  Currently Florida and other states offer rebates, the money runs out and the industry slows down.  This scenario has played out in several states. IF we want to be serious about solar energy there needs to be a better way.  And Germany, and other Europeon countries think that FIT is that better way. The Basics of a FIT- (Simplified) 1.You install a system on your home. 2. You buy power from power company at regular rate-ie $.12kwhr, 3. You sell power from your system back to power company at say $.25 kwhr.  This difference helps pay for the investment in solar, the program gets funded by everyone paying a little more for electricity from the grid-utility.(In Germany it is said that for the monthly cost of a loaf of bread the program is funded).  As Capacity increases, cost goes down, the price power is sold back to utility goes down, and at a projected date, the cost of electricity from a solar system equals the regular price we pay for electricity from the grid (which here is Florida is probably coal powered), and we accelerate our move to solar energy independence. A program like this would make Florida THE SUNSHINE STATE.   

for more info visit : www.energreenusa.com

 

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Rainmaker
46,676
Pete Jalbert
The Maui Real Estate Team, Inc. - Paia, HI
R(S)

Countries like Germany and Denmark have made some great efforts towards moving towards renewables. There are lessons to be drawn from their use of wind and sloar. I hope that the next president will make efforts to stimulate the growth of renewable energy through programs like this one. I think we have a two birds with one stone type of opportunity in front of us where renewable efforts will help stimulate the economy by creating green manufacturing and construction while improving the environment.

October 31, 2008 05:31 PM #1
Rainer
57,118
Deb Hurt
Realty Pro Albuquerque - Albuquerque, NM
ABR, e-Pro,Green, TRC

I agree. We need a more creative approach to developing sustainable power and green jobs and this type of approach provides both. Americans in general are very stuck in the "we are the biggest, best and smartest at everything" state of mind and it is going to be much easier to use an approach like this that they can fit into what they are already comfortable with (buying power from the existing power grid) that continuing to try to persuade them to make what they see as huge changes. It may be more gradual but it would start the momentum in the right direction.

I love your example,of the cost of a loaf of bread.

November 01, 2008 11:57 AM #2
Rainer
7,362
scott messinger
energreen - Saint Augustine Beach, FL

Pete- I couldnt agree with you more.  But I see it as killing to BIG Birds with one stone.  They project congress  recently passing the Energy Bill  and extending the tax credit for solar for 8 years will create 400,000 plus jobs (good jobs) , plus energy independence for our country.   Scott

Deb- thanks for taking the time to read and comment.  Remember it wasnt that far back when we didnt recycle and just threw all our garbage in one can.  We can change... Scott

 

November 01, 2008 04:35 PM #3
Anonymous
Anonymous
Vern Masterson

Very interesting topical comparison of the 2 regions.  Not only does Florida have way more sunshine than Germany, but it's also a lot larger of an area, which means there's more real estate for <a href="http://www.sequoiasolar.com/innovation.html">solar power panels</a>.  That means there may be potential to actually overproduce electricity in certain areas of the state and send it through the power grid to needier areas that get less sun and can't generate as efficiently.

December 16, 2008 10:49 AM #4
Rainer
7,362
scott messinger
energreen - Saint Augustine Beach, FL

Vern- I agree with your comments. I think  as a state and as a nation we are on the edge of significant growth in both solar and other renewables.  You are right, net metering (selling back to the utilities) is poised to benefit many.  I'm very convinced the solar landscape in FL and US will look much brighter 10 years from now.  (I graduated with a degree in Energy Management almost 30 years ago and felt we were on the edge then- but this time....)

December 16, 2008 11:56 AM #5
Rainmaker
175,895
DEBORAH STONE
Hogue and Belong Bankers Hill- San Diego, CA - San Diego, CA

Scott

The reason we (US) don't have more alternative energy is not because we don't have the technology but because somehow, there is no REVENUE in it for the government like with OIL.

December 19, 2008 10:11 PM #6
Rainmaker
412,003
Betina Foreman
512-771-6318 Austin Home Girls Realty - Austin, TX
Realtor, C.N.E. Selling Homes in Lake Travis & Central Austin!

It soulds like Floridas number one product would go from oranges to Solar Power! That works for me! i say go for it!!

December 22, 2008 11:26 PM #7
Anonymous
Anonymous
Deborah

Deborah-  You are so correct.  So much of the shift may be towards how do we as a govenment or a a country make money on this.  A big part of that answer will be 

we will create jobs- we may be able to save billions in the future by not having to enter into wars to protect oil interest, energy independence can mean money to us.  We just need to do a better job learning that. regards

 

December 24, 2008 06:07 AM #8
Rainer
7,362
scott messinger
energreen - Saint Augustine Beach, FL

BETINA- Thanks for taking the time to comment.  Florida could do both.  You could enjoy your early morning glass of fresh florida orange juice reading the morning newspaper next to your favorite reading lamp powered by solar electricity.  But I do think the orange industry does use waste from its orange operations to produce a fuel source.  Every bit helps.

December 24, 2008 06:20 AM #9
Rainer
42,298
Alex Mordas
EarthSTEPS - Tallahassee, FL
Green Building Consultant

Much better than net metering... I would love to hear some of the details for Gainesville!!

 

January 14, 2009 12:54 PM #10
Rainer
83,712
Mary Bigelow
GLREA - Coopersville, MI
2010 Letnulls Do It AGAIN!!!!

Hi Scott - You are absolutely right! Feed In Tariff's have propelled the european countries so far ahead. Here's a gas -- Germany has less solar "insolation" than Michigan - in other words, their sun exposure is not as good as ours - and yet they installed and are benefitting from so much more solar than us!!!

If you have not had the chance or been exposed to the works, check out Paul Gipes works and presentations on Feed In Tarriff's! I have read many of Mr. Gipe's works and met him in person in Grand Rapids, Miching last month. He is an authority on  FIT's, wind and solar.

Feed in Tarriff's are a great idea when properly implemented.

Maybe the name should be changed because Americans equate Tarriff with Tax!!!

Good luck in the endeavor and keep us abreast!!!

January 15, 2009 12:13 AM #11
Rainmaker
120,131
Joanne O'Donnell
Chic Home Interiors - Stager, Trainer & EcoProfessional - Oakland, CA

Scott, very informative blog and interesting information on FIT.  Sounds like "they" are starting to get it...

January 15, 2009 12:59 AM #12
Rainer
7,362
scott messinger
energreen - Saint Augustine Beach, FL

Alex- thanks for checking in.  Florida PSC just drafted new rules regarding upping our state renewable energy requirements.  Never like politics but our energy is very policy driven.  Will catch up with you on your LEED program congrats.

January 16, 2009 01:47 PM #13
Rainer
7,362
scott messinger
energreen - Saint Augustine Beach, FL

Mary- thanks for the Paul Gipe link.  Check it out and saved as a favorite.  Saw Wisconsin just approved a FIT- I beleive paying .0225 per kwhr- I own property up there, but dont remember cost of kwhr, but if electricity cost .12 and can sell back at .225 you have my attention.

also feel free to check out my energy site at energreenusa.com   We just finished design on 2 green homes and will post here this weekend or 1st of next week. 

January 16, 2009 01:54 PM #14
Rainer
7,362
scott messinger
energreen - Saint Augustine Beach, FL

Joanne- I agree, actually I am kind of learning that WE are THEY.  So I have been sending emails and making some phone calls via prompting from Votesolar.org and solarnation I believe are poper names.  Maybe a whole bunch of ME's make up a whole bunch of WE's and THEY get influenced by WE  more energy news at energreenusa.com and a couple green homes we are marketing in a few days

January 16, 2009 02:00 PM #15
Rainer
73,665
Sabrina Kelley
ERA The Herman Group - Woodland Park, CO
Pikes Peak Region Realtor, Teller, Park and El Paso County Colorado

Does Florida not have a buy back program in place currently?

January 16, 2009 04:32 PM #16
Rainer
7,362
scott messinger
energreen - Saint Augustine Beach, FL

Thanks for checking in I assume you are referring to a program that the utilities buy the excess electricity produced by the home owner- net metering.  Florida have a rule that requires it but doiesnt apply to all utlities.  The utility in the City of Gainseville is taking the initiative to pursue a Feed-In-Tarrif program The FIT type program  buys it back at a higher rate.  Florida as a state does have a rebate program on solar electric purchased but that money runs out fast ljust as it had in other states with rebate programs.  The program needs tp be sustainable.  Issues related to Florida energy and policy are posted on my site at www.energreenusa.com

January 16, 2009 05:09 PM #17
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Rainer
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