Germany now has 1.3 million solar energy systems which generated 28 billion kilowatt hours in 2012
by Michael Smith (Veshengro)
There are now some 1.3 million solar power systems in Germany with German solar photovoltaic collectors having generated 28 billion kilowatts, in 2012, supplying 5% of Germany's total demand for electricity.
According to the German Solar Industry Association (BSW-Solar), Germany now boasts 1.3 million solar power systems – with most of those privately owned. These systems generated an estimated 28 billion kilowatt hours of clean electricity in 2012; representing year on year growth of 45 percent.
Chief executive of the Solar Industry Federation Carsten Koernig said solar power's share of Germany's energy supply had quadrupled in three years and the price of solar panel systems halved.
Photovoltaics in Germany currently supply around five percent of electricity demand. By 2020, BSW-Solar aims to see PV's share in Germany's electricity mix reach at least 10 percent and at least 20 percent by 2030.
Germany's strong push for solar power has been a key driving force for reducing the cost of solar panels and related parts around the world.
Now, with prices of lithium-ion batteries dropping, just as predicted, BSW expects to see an upsurge of consumers adding batteries to their systems, in 2013, to boost self-consumption rather than selling their power to the grid under "feed-in tariff arrangements" which it expects will offer a higher financial returns to consumers, and improve limitations with intermittency, (variations in weather, and day-night cycles.)
Increasing numbers of consumers are attracted to the idea of self-reliance, and being able to maintain electricity during blackouts caused by storms, or utility induced peak load management crises during heat waves.
If one enters "German solar energy" on Google images one can see many beautiful and historic churches, and fair tale-like Bavarian country-sides, that have incorporated solar panels in a way that preserves the natural beautify or their historical architecture, and scenic country side.
If, in addition to PV's, people would also add small wind turbines into the mix of energy self-reliance and self-sufficiency, using batteries to store the energy their homes, farms and workshops could be off-grid altogether.
Let's hear it for sun and wind to help give us a brighter, cleaner, and less expensive energy future and to reduce emissions.
While in Germany, once again, the people and government, seem to get it, in countries such as the UK and the US neither people not governments seem to get it. But, then again, renewable energy does not provide the politicians with the backhanders that they get from coal, oil, gas and nuclear. It is as simple as that.