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  • Monday, January 4, 2016


    Wind, solar power soaring in spite of bargain prices for fossil fuels

    Joby Warrick, January 1, 2015 (Washington Post)

    “Wind and solar power appear set for a record-breaking year in 2016…in spite of a global glut of cheap fossil fuels…Installations of wind turbines and solar panels soared in 2015 as utility companies went on a worldwide building binge, taking advantage of falling prices for clean technology as well as an improving regulatory and investment climate. Both industries have seen stock prices jump since Congress approved an extension of tax credits for renewables…Orders for 2016 solar and wind installations are up sharply, from the United States to China to the developing economies of Africa and Latin America, all in defiance of stubbornly low prices for coal and natural gas, the industry’s chief competitors…

    “Energy analysts say the boom is being spurred in part by improved technology, which has made wind and solar more competitive with fossil fuels in many regions. But equally important, experts say, is better access to financing, as major Wall Street investment houses adopt a more bullish posture toward an industry that was once considered financially risky…Wind and solar together account for only about 6 percent of U.S. electricity generation, compared with about 39 percent for coal. And wind and solar companies have yet to conquer the biggest challenge for renewables: how to cheaply store energy so it is reliably available on cloudy or calm days…Analysts also warn that renewables could suffer if prices for natural gas remain at such historically low levels…For now, however, industry officials say cheap fossil fuels are having little impact on purchase orders…” click here for more


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