Law stands between SA and cheap solar energy

By Londiwe Buthelezi, Business Report:

The price of energy from solar photovoltaic (PV) cells has fallen 10 percent annually and will be at grid parity with Eskom by 2015. With Eskom’s tariff set to double to 97.51c a kilowatt-hour by 2017, PV energy is expected to be cheaper than Eskom’s coal-generated electricity by 2017.

This is according to calculations by David Lipschitz, an energy expert at energy company My Power Station.

PV energy is created by panels using solar radiation.

Lipschitz said at the Solar Power Africa conference in Cape Town yesterday that the cost of PV energy was sliding on excess supply of panels. “We could reach grid parity with Eskom even before [2015].”

However, this excess supply was not making its way to the national grid because electricity regulations in the country prevented those independent power producers (IPPs) not taking part in government procurement programmes from connecting to the grid… Read more 

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