California Solar Initiative at 85% of MW goal (and how we helped them get there)

It’s a remarkable achievement that in just seven years, the California Solar Initiative (CSI) has reported an estimated 1,629 megawatts (MW) of solar PV has been committed. That is a whopping 85% of its goal to install 1,940 MW of solar by the end of 2016 in California’s independently owned utilities (IOUs)—Pacific Gas and Electric … Continued

Solar trends hold strong at Intersolar 2013

Those of us from Clean Power Research who attended this year’s Intersolar North America in San Francisco were pleasantly surprised to find a robust show. Although Intersolar is always well planned and executed, drawing the best companies from all over the world, many solar exhibitions have suffered from industry consolidation and shrinking marketing budgets. While … Continued

How to reduce solar risk from seasonal variability: Part II

As we discussed in an article last month, it’s no secret that solar power generation can vary from season-to-season based on local weather conditions. So given this variability, how do PV system owners—whether residential, third-party, commercial or utility-scale owners—put a value on their investment? The answer lies in the ability to look at longer time-horizons … Continued

What solar leasing companies need to know to protect their investment—and their bottom line

A critical aspect of the financial health of solar leasing companies or other ‘third-party owners’ (TPOs) is the performance of their ‘fleet’ of installed PV. When a PV system is not operating at peak performance, it’s not producing as much power as expected, which negatively impacts the leaseholder’s bottom line. This performance risk is one … Continued

How to account for seasonal variability in solar power production

Intuitively, we know that solar power generation is dependent on seasonal weather conditions. The January and February PV Power Maps, published in the May/June 2013 issue of Solar Today, illustrate that this year was no exception, with month-to-month variability affecting most regions of the U.S. In January, most of the eastern seaboard experienced above-average solar … Continued