Weatherdem's Weblog

Bridging climate science, citizens, and policy

Germany Installed More Solar PV In December Than The U.S. Did In All Of 2011


I’m so glad the U.S. has a more efficient marketplace than those socialist European countries.  That oft-parroted talking point must be the reason that Germany installed more than twice as much solar PV in December 2011 than the U.S. did in January through December 2011.  That’s right: twice as much in 1/12th the time at half the cost.

It’s a good thing we Americans have everything figured out already.  Otherwise, we would be trailing in installing technologies that we invented.  Oh wait, we are trailing.  The bottom line: feed-in tariffs work.


3 thoughts on “Germany Installed More Solar PV In December Than The U.S. Did In All Of 2011

  1. Why are so many fixated by wind power? Now that we have the technology to generate solar-powered electricity even when it is cloudy and/or at night, everybody should be doing it – and pursuing tidal powered solutions as well (if they have a suitable coastline).

    But, oh dear, silly me, I forgot, governments are not willing to level-up the playing field, make carbon-based energy cost reflect the environmental damage it is doing, and then let the market drive the rapid expansion of renewable energy.

    Instead we have car manufacturers promising to scale-up the production of electric cars over the next 20 years! There is of course only one problem with that as a strategy, we cannot afford to wait 20 years. In order to avoid irreversible and catastrophic climate change, we need to do all of that – and much more – within the next 5 years.

    • I agree with your 2nd paragraph wholeheartedly. As to your question, my understanding is that wind power infrastructure has come down in cost more quickly than has solar. That is mostly due to foreign investment in specific technologies in the past 30 years – the U.S. has certainly not led in the renewable energy sector.

      My thinking has shifted on the timeline available. I think we’re past the time when our actions could alleviate most of what could happen. We’ve simply waited too long and the scale of the problem is too large to address it in the next 20 years, which means the next 5 means almost nothing. I say almost because we can put policies in place now to help make the work necessary in 20 a little easier. I’ll have more specific reasoning behind these statements coming.

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