NewEnergyNews: THE SIGNIFICANCE OF SOLAR SOFT COSTS

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YESTERDAY

  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: WHAT SUNEDISON'S BIG BUY INTO BATTERY STORAGE COULD OFFER
  • QUICK NEWS, August 26: NEW ENERGY READY TO TAKE CONTROL; THE PRESIDENT BOOSTS SOLAR; EV CHARGING ON THE GO
  • THE DAY BEFORE

  • TODAY’S STUDY: SOLAR THIS YEAR
  • QUICK NEWS, August 25: SOLAR CHEAPER THAN NAT GAS; WIND TO THE RESCUE; NUKE PLANT COSTS STILL RISING
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    THE DAY BEFORE THE DAY BEFORE

  • TODAY’S STUDY: TOWARD A 21ST CENTURY ELECTRICITY SYSTEM IN CALIFORNIA
  • QUICK NEWS, August 24: FAITH IN A TIME OF CHANGING CLIMATE; A TEXAS SOLAR BOOM?; WIND COULD BE THE CLIMATE HERO
  • THE DAY BEFORE THAT

  • Weekend Video: Hot Times Become Hottest Times
  • Weekend Video: The Google Way To Solar Savings
  • Weekend Video: Is Solar The Next Texas Energy Boom?
  • AND THE DAY BEFORE THAT

  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-FIVE REASONS FOR CLIMATE HOPE
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-DANISH ENERGY GIANT BUYS GIANT UK OCEAN WIND
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-EAST ASIA BRINGS THE EV BATTERY POWER
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-INDIA OPENS WORLD’S 1ST SOLAR POWERED AIRPORT
  • THE LAST DAY UP HERE

    THINGS-TO-THINK-ABOUT THURSDAY, August 20:

  • TTTA Thursday-HOW TO MAKE DENIERS CARE
  • TTTA Thursday-GOOGLE SHOWS THE SOLAR WAY TO SAVE
  • TTTA Thursday-MARKET LIKES WIND MAKERS
  • TTTA Thursday-OIL MAN CELEBRATES DRIVE ELECTRIC WEEK
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    Anne B. Butterfield of Daily Camera and Huffington Post, is an occasional contributor to NewEnergyNews

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    Some of Anne's contributions:

  • Another Tipping Point: US Coal Supply Decline So Real Even West Virginia Concurs (REPORT), November 26, 2013
  • SOLAR FOR ME BUT NOT FOR THEE ~ Xcel's Push to Undermine Rooftop Solar, September 20, 2013
  • NEW BILLS AND NEW BIRDS in Colorado's recent session, May 20, 2013
  • Lies, damned lies and politicians (October 8, 2012)
  • Colorado's Elegant Solution to Fracking (April 23, 2012)
  • Shale Gas: From Geologic Bubble to Economic Bubble (March 15, 2012)
  • Taken for granted no more (February 5, 2012)
  • The Republican clown car circus (January 6, 2012)
  • Twenty-Somethings of Colorado With Skin in the Game (November 22, 2011)
  • Occupy, Xcel, and the Mother of All Cliffs (October 31, 2011)
  • Boulder Can Own Its Power With Distributed Generation (June 7, 2011)
  • The Plunging Cost of Renewables and Boulder's Energy Future (April 19, 2011)
  • Paddling Down the River Denial (January 12, 2011)
  • The Fox (News) That Jumped the Shark (December 16, 2010)
  • Click here for an archive of Butterfield columns

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  • Thursday, September 20, 2012

    THE SIGNIFICANCE OF SOLAR SOFT COSTS

    Why Are Residential PV Prices in Germany So Much Lower Than in the United States? A Scoping Analysis

    September 19, 2012 (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory)

    “The wide disparity between the installed price of residential PV in Germany and the United States has been well documented and can be attributed primarily to differences in “soft” costs (or business process costs). In order to better characterize the nature of these differences, LBNL fielded a survey of German PV installers to collect granular data on the number of labor hours and labor costs associated with various soft cost elements for residential PV in Germany…The comparison focuses specifically on host-customer-owned systems installed in Germany in 2011 and in the U.S. in 2010.

    “Key findings from [Why Are Residential PV Prices in Germany So Much Lower Than in the United States? A Scoping Analysis] include…[1] German installers reported average soft costs of $0.62/W in 2011, which is roughly $2.70/W lower than the average soft costs reported by U.S. installers…[2] Customer acquisition costs averaged just $0.07/W in Germany, or roughly $0.60/W lower than in the U.S…”

    “…[3] Installation labor requirements averaged 7.5 hours for German systems, leading to $0.55/W lower installation labor costs than in the U.S. (though these survey data diverge substantially from other estimates, suggesting a need for further validation)…[4] Permitting, interconnection, and inspection (PII) processes required 10 hours of labor, on average, in Germany, with no permitting fee, resulting in PII costs roughly $0.20/W less than in the U.S…

    “…[5] German residential systems are exempt from sales/value-added tax, while U.S. systems are subject to an average sales tax of roughly $0.20/W (when considering the geographical distribution of U.S. systems and the existence of sales tax exemptions for PV in many U.S. states)…[6] The remaining gap in soft costs between Germany and the U.S. (~$1.15/W) is associated with overhead, profit, and other residual soft costs not captured in the categories above…”

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