Is Renewable Energy a "Good" Investment?

Jan 6, 2011 Full story: Tech Review 18

When deciding where to invest your money, you weigh the potential return against the risk.

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Solarman

Palm Desert, CA

#1 Jan 8, 2011
"So the company installed solar panels to power a major facility in Palm Springs, California. Wicker says the company is pleased with its modest return on investment—but apparently not pleased enough to roll out the technology throughout the company."

That's because the corportate 'boiled frogs' can't see past one year, five years, solar PV is a 50 year solution. Solar PV is an investment to be considered 'heirloom' in quality and quantity. Energy prices will not decrease any time soon, if ever. Installing one's own solar PV system and insulating one's self from future cost increases for the business or home is a good place to put one's money.
AMY___

United States

#2 Jan 8, 2011
I would rather put my money into something i own rather than pay a utility company for the rest of my life.
LMAO

Guston, KY

#3 Jan 8, 2011
Solar Power is a big ripoff and has no viable return on Investment. The people who post here won't put up the numbers. They either don't or won't say and talk in some feel good general terms.
Solarman

Palm Desert, CA

#4 Jan 8, 2011
AMY___ wrote:
I would rather put my money into something i own rather than pay a utility company for the rest of my life.
Just a week or so ago, I got my bank statement and it showed my CD account was giving me a whopping 0.5% interest, 1/2 of a lousy percent. If you take $1,000.00 and put it in the bank at that 0.5% you're getting $5.00 annually. A one panel with micro-inverter PV system will cost about $1,000.00 for an average peak system output of 200W. If you get 5 sun hours a day average you could make 1KWh of electricity a day. Even if cloudy days cut your annual energy production to 200 days a year, at an electricity rate of 11 cents per KWh, you'd have saved $22.00 on your electric bill, probably more. Invest $1,000.00 get $5.00 a year or $22.00 plus a year. Instead of putting your hard earned money in an under perforing bank account, put it on your roof in solar PV.
LMAO

Guston, KY

#5 Jan 8, 2011
Solarman wrote:
<quoted text>Just a week or so ago, I got my bank statement and it showed my CD account was giving me a whopping 0.5% interest, 1/2 of a lousy percent. If you take $1,000.00 and put it in the bank at that 0.5% you're getting $5.00 annually. A one panel with micro-inverter PV system will cost about $1,000.00 for an average peak system output of 200W. If you get 5 sun hours a day average you could make 1KWh of electricity a day. Even if cloudy days cut your annual energy production to 200 days a year, at an electricity rate of 11 cents per KWh, you'd have saved $22.00 on your electric bill, probably more. Invest $1,000.00 get $5.00 a year or $22.00 plus a year. Instead of putting your hard earned money in an under perforing bank account, put it on your roof in solar PV.
Your a joke, get a new bank, that one is ripping you off. A CD account ?? What is that ?? I know what a Certificate of Depisit is, it's a banking instrument for a specific period of time at a specific rate. Those rates are between 1.25 % to 1.80% now.

Put up some real numbers

system cost $50,000

Federal Credit $15,000

Net Cost $35,000

Sun Hours 4.5 x 7 khw = 31.5 avg kwh

25 % loss = 31.5 - 7.8 = 23.6 kwh produced per day

23.6 x 365 days = 8623 kwh produced per year

$.106 per kwh .106 x 8623 =$ 914.00 savings per year

Net Cost $35,000 /$914.00 = 38.2 years to payback

You can argue about the Sun Hours, you can argue about my kwh cost ($.106 ), you can argue about the loss factor, but the bottom line you can't.

1) PV panels degrade at a rate of approx .075 a year. The system above is a new system that will degrade over time, in 15 years it could be down of the original output to 75 % of the above and the payback would be longer.

2) You say you have NO maintenance cost, all free. That is a dream.
Solarman

Palm Desert, CA

#6 Jan 8, 2011
LMAO wrote:
<quoted text>Your a joke, get a new bank, that one is ripping you off. A CD account ?? What is that ?? I know what a Certificate of Depisit is, it's a banking instrument for a specific period of time at a specific rate. Those rates are between 1.25 % to 1.80% now.
Put up some real numbers
system cost $50,000
Federal Credit $15,000
Net Cost $35,000
Sun Hours 4.5 x 7 khw = 31.5 avg kwh
25 % loss = 31.5 - 7.8 = 23.6 kwh produced per day
23.6 x 365 days = 8623 kwh produced per year
$.106 per kwh .106 x 8623 =$ 914.00 savings per year
Net Cost $35,000 /$914.00 = 38.2 years to payback
You can argue about the Sun Hours, you can argue about my kwh cost ($.106 ), you can argue about the loss factor, but the bottom line you can't.
1) PV panels degrade at a rate of approx .075 a year. The system above is a new system that will degrade over time, in 15 years it could be down of the original output to 75 % of the above and the payback would be longer.
2) You say you have NO maintenance cost, all free. That is a dream.
Here Jerkov do some homework and stop blowing shiest. www.affordable-solar.com ASGP 10.1 KWGT Xpand Enphase kit 40.2K, ASGP 8.2KW battery backup kit 37.8K. IF you would try just a little, you could find an installation that would be less. Of course you've studied the desire web site, right? You've done an energy audit to determine your particular needs? How do you know you need 7KW? How do you know it's not 4KW, 5KW? CD a banking instrument, yeah, the only instrument you're familiar with is the one you shove in your mouth while you troll. DO something besides talk, bloviate. You're not posting 'numbers' either, nor are you actually researching to find a system that will fit within your budget. The truth is you're a renter, right? You make somebody's else's mortgage and property tax payments for them and call it home. How sad, MTV, how sad.
LMAO

Guston, KY

#7 Jan 8, 2011
Net Cost 1,000

Sun Hours 5 x 200 w = 1 avg kwh

25 % lost =.75 kwh produced per day

.75 x 365 days = 273 kwh produced per year

$.11 per kwh $.11 x 273 = 30.03 savings per year

Net Cost $1,000 /$30.03 = 33.3 years to payback
LMAO

Guston, KY

#8 Jan 8, 2011
I don't have to say a word ...lol . My numbers came out better than your $22 figure. It's the payback time that is the issue, It's a loser.
Solarman

Palm Desert, CA

#9 Jan 8, 2011
LMAO wrote:
Net Cost 1,000
Sun Hours 5 x 200 w = 1 avg kwh
25 % lost =.75 kwh produced per day
.75 x 365 days = 273 kwh produced per year
$.11 per kwh $.11 x 273 = 30.03 savings per year
Net Cost $1,000 /$30.03 = 33.3 years to payback
Where do you get the 25% loss? Panels 'could' degrade over time. The technology for panels has increased greatly in the last 10 years, so panel degradation with new technology could turn out to be much less. Most panel manufacturers will give a replacement warantee on panels of 90% of full rated power to 10 years and then 80% of full power up to 25 years. If you buy a 225w sharp or Kyocera or Schott or Sanyo panel you can still supply a micro inverter and meet that 200W output in spite of panel degradation. Your 25% loss is way off. Proper design should keep all of system losses to 3% or less. That's still 94% system efficiency. You stick with 0.11KWh, it may be more next month, probably will not be less. In the past 30 years, electricity rates have gone up right at 1% a year. Now we're seeing increases of 5% to 20% across the country. Your simple math is just that, you're not making the correct change from the purchase. You have to look at what your average yearly power usage is, then make a decision as to what sized system you would need. I took 5 years worth of power bills to get an average as to what my system requirements would be on a daily basis. When you put in a system, all power increases after that date are absorbed by what you generate each day. Whether you generate a little power or enough for your homes daily needs, you still benefit more when prices increase, do you see electric rates going down? As prices increase, your payoff decreases, that's just the way it is.
LMAO

Guston, KY

#10 Jan 8, 2011
Al right, if I believed you and I don't think there is any solar system that is 100% efficient ( unless you can show me one ) let's take to Loss completly out to please you. Do you sell used cars ??

Net Cost 1,000

Sun Hours 5 x 200 w = 1 avg kwh

1 x 365 days = 365 kwh produced per year

$.11 per kwh $.11 x 365 = 40.15 savings per year

Net Cost $1,000 /$40.15 = 24.9 years to payback
LMAO

Guston, KY

#11 Jan 8, 2011
Like you are expectinr The cost of eletricity to go up, I am hoping the interest will be higher that 1.5 % I can get now.

$3.34 for 24 years with an interest rate of 1.50% compounded Semiannually
with an initial starting balance of $1,000.00
Year Balance
1 $1,055.52
2 $1,111.88
3 $1,169.09
4 $1,227.17
5 $1,286.14
6 $1,345.99
7 $1,406.76
8 $1,468.44
9 $1,531.06
10 $1,594.63
11 $1,659.17
12 $1,724.68
13 $1,791.18
14 $1,858.69
15 $1,927.23
16 $1,996.81
17 $2,067.44
18 $2,139.14
19 $2,211.93
20 $2,285.82
21 $2,360.83
22 $2,436.98
23 $2,514.28
24 $2,592.76
Final Savings Balance:$2,592.76
Solarman

Palm Desert, CA

#12 Jan 8, 2011
LMAO wrote:
Like you are expectinr The cost of eletricity to go up, I am hoping the interest will be higher that 1.5 % I can get now.
$3.34 for 24 years with an interest rate of 1.50% compounded Semiannually
with an initial starting balance of $1,000.00
Year Balance
1 $1,055.52
2 $1,111.88
3 $1,169.09
4 $1,227.17
5 $1,286.14
6 $1,345.99
7 $1,406.76
8 $1,468.44
9 $1,531.06
10 $1,594.63
11 $1,659.17
12 $1,724.68
13 $1,791.18
14 $1,858.69
15 $1,927.23
16 $1,996.81
17 $2,067.44
18 $2,139.14
19 $2,211.93
20 $2,285.82
21 $2,360.83
22 $2,436.98
23 $2,514.28
24 $2,592.76
Final Savings Balance:$2,592.76
Well the compound interest program on the web says 1431.41,what ever dude. IF power stays at 11 cents per KWh for that same 24 years, I believe my previous example was for 200 days or 200KWh annually 200 x 0.11 =$22.00 x 24 =$528.00. In your eyes the 2,593, still don't see where that came from 1431 seems more likely, I'm still seeing $100.00 more in benefit from the solar PV. There is no temptation to spend the 1K on the roof as it is now part of the house. It is very easy to sign away 1K if you have it in the bank.
LMAO

Guston, KY

#13 Jan 8, 2011
Solarman wrote:
<quoted text>Well the compound interest program on the web says 1431.41,what ever dude. IF power stays at 11 cents per KWh for that same 24 years, I believe my previous example was for 200 days or 200KWh annually 200 x 0.11 =$22.00 x 24 =$528.00. In your eyes the 2,593, still don't see where that came from 1431 seems more likely, I'm still seeing $100.00 more in benefit from the solar PV. There is no temptation to spend the 1K on the roof as it is now part of the house. It is very easy to sign away 1K if you have it in the bank.
Thats because your bank pays you .5 % on your money and mine pays 1.50% I have a Certificate of Deposit and you have a CD account, whatever that is. If rates are 2.5 times what they are now, you win, providing I only get 1.5 % on my money for 24 years.
Solarman

Indio, CA

#14 Jan 9, 2011
LMAO wrote:
<quoted text>Thats because your bank pays you .5 % on your money and mine pays 1.50% I have a Certificate of Deposit and you have a CD account, whatever that is. If rates are 2.5 times what they are now, you win, providing I only get 1.5 % on my money for 24 years.
www.moneychimp.com/calculator/ compound_interest_calculator says at 1.5% it's $1431.00 after 24 years. Yor're showing numbers for something like 3.8% in your calculations. No wonder you're having problems figuring the payback on a PV system.
LMAO

Guston, KY

#15 Jan 9, 2011
Solarman wrote:
<quoted text> www.moneychimp.com/calculator/compound_intere... says at 1.5% it's $1431.00 after 24 years. Yor're showing numbers for something like 3.8% in your calculations. No wonder you're having problems figuring the payback on a PV system.
Your pretty stupid, you'v shown that,how could anyone expect you to do math. Go back and run your numbers again.

Net Cost 1,000

Sun Hours 5 x 200 w = 1 avg kwh

1 x 365 days = 365 kwh produced per year

$.11 per kwh $.11 x 365 = 40.15 savings per year

Net Cost $1,000 /$40.15 = 24.9 years to payback

40.15 / 12 =$3.34 Per Month

$3.34 a month for 24 years with an interest rate of 1.50% compounded Semiannually with an initial starting balance of $1,000.00

Year Balance
1 $1,055.52
2 $1,111.88
3 $1,169.09
4 $1,227.17
5 $1,286.14
6 $1,345.99
7 $1,406.76
8 $1,468.44
9 $1,531.06
10 $1,594.63
11 $1,659.17
12 $1,724.68
13 $1,791.18
14 $1,858.69
15 $1,927.23
16 $1,996.81
17 $2,067.44
18 $2,139.14
19 $2,211.93
20 $2,285.82
21 $2,360.83
22 $2,436.98
23 $2,514.28
24 $2,592.76
Final Savings Balance:$2,592.76
INTEK2

United States

#16 Jan 9, 2011
Solarman wrote:
<quoted text> www.moneychimp.com/calculator/compound_intere... says at 1.5% it's $1431.00 after 24 years. Yor're showing numbers for something like 3.8% in your calculations. No wonder you're having problems figuring the payback on a PV system.
Your wasting your time with this one. He will argue with a sign.
Solarman

Indio, CA

#17 Jan 9, 2011
INTEK2 wrote:
<quoted text>Your wasting your time with this one. He will argue with a sign.
Too many arguments going for the squid at one time. It likes to change currencies with arguments. Typical renter, make somebody else rich, bitch about it, and tell everyone (why?) something shouldn't be done. Give it a link to a site that calculates interest and principle just like it claimed in a privious post, showing it was off by over a grand and it calls me stupid,Jesus! Darwin is waiting for this one.
AMY___

United States

#18 Jan 10, 2011
It was plain he didn't know much about PV. Much of his information in earlier posts were from "fringe" sites and were completely inaccurate. Not knowing his location or situation, he cannot expect anyone to calculate the system size or financial outlay and payback. I have began to think he just likes an argument for arguments sake.

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