SOLAR WILL SOON BE $12 BILLION BUSINESS
The involvement of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs in the solar energy industry is striking. Google's "RE < C" program aims to make New Energy (RE) cost less than coal (C). RE < C's biggest investment to date is in the concentrating solar industry. Vinod Khosla, Bill Gross and John Doerr are also very active in developing solar power plants.
Elon Musk is backing a project to gather large groups of photovoltaic buyers so as to purchase solar systems at volume discounts. Still other Silicon Valley money is at work expanding the potential of thin film solar. That seems to be the area of biggest expansion right now, perhaps because of the big value jump by First Solar last year. (See FIRST SOLAR: FIRST IN SUN, FIRST IN EARNINGS)
Either these folks are drunk on the power of their 90s successes in the digital world or they know something is coming.
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Solar Energy Market Will Soar to $12 Billion by 2012
February 28, 2008 (SBI/PR Newswire via Yahoo Finance)
SBI (Tatjana Meerman, Publisher), a market research firm specializing in summarizing markets.
The U.S. Solar Energy Market
Impressive growth and more coming. (click to enlarge)
- 2007: Solar energy industry revenues went over $3.8 billion
- 2012: Solar energy industry revenues expected to nearly triple to $12 billion.
Also in the report: Comprehensive data on shipments, sales estimates, 5-year projections for photovoltaic and solar thermal, profiles of energy market competition., analysis of key trends.
Solar industry growth means job growth. (click to enlarge)
Growth will be driven past economic setbacks by (1) technological momentum, (2) increasing private-sector solar investment and (3) growing public-sector support.
Obstacles: (1) economic (pricing, affordability, financing, adequate investment), (2) potential supply shortages (silicon and other raw materials), (3) unfavorable legal structures, (4) utility barriers and (5) need for a skilled workforce.
The report offers a separate focus on concentrating solar power (CSP).
The heat is on in thin film. (click to enlarge)
Tatjana Meerman, Publisher, SBI: "Solar energy is a rapidly growing industry, particularly now that the U.S. government seems to be getting behind solar energy…In the past, there was little support; however, recent incentives from Capitol Hill provide users of solar energy with tax credits and rebates on solar systems. Another significant movement was in 2006 when President Bush declared a Solar America Initiative, which provided solar energy manufacturers with funding to accelerate research and development and creating new technologies."