As we roll into the new year I like to gaze into my crystal ball to see what’s in store for the rooftop solar industry in 2014. Making predictions in the solar industry is like weather forecasting — you can determine the general trends, but getting the timing exactly right is challenging. But that won’t stop me from trying, because when you do get the timing right it can be great for business.
Unfortunately, you never know when a bizarre storm will hit. Case in point: within days after recording this podcast we got the news that SolarWorld is launching a new trade case against non-U.S. manufacturers of solar modules. That action adds a lot of uncertainty to equipment pricing, and puts another crack in my crystal ball. That’s a story for another podcast.
Nevertheless, we have a pretty good idea of the incentive landscape for 2014, as well as the future for financing and paperwork. And the dice have been thrown for the utility business model — it’s only a matter of time before they come to rest as snake eyes. So listen to this week’s Energy Show on Renewable Energy World for my ten solar predictions in 2014.
About The Energy Show
As energy costs consume more and more of our hard-earned dollars, we as consumers really start to pay attention. But we don’t have to resign ourselves to $5/gallon gas prices, $200/month electric bills and $500 heating bills. There are literally hundreds of products, tricks and techniques that we can use to dramatically reduce these costs — very affordably.
The Energy Show on Renewable Energy World is a weekly 20-minute podcast that provides tips and advice to reduce your home and business energy consumption. Every week we’ll cover topics that will help cut your energy bill, explain new products and technologies in plain English, and cut through the hype so that you can make smart and cost-effective energy choices.
About Your Host
Barry Cinnamon is a long-time advocate of renewable energy and is a widely recognized solar power expert. In 2001 he founded Akeena Solar — which grew to become the largest national residential solar installer by the middle of the last decade with over 10,000 rooftop customers coast to coast. He partnered with Westinghouse to create Westinghouse Solar in 2010, and sold the company in 2012.
His pioneering work on reducing costs of rooftop solar power systems include Andalay, the first solar panel with integrated racking, grounding and wiring; the first UL listed AC solar panel; and the first fully “plug and play” AC solar panel. His current efforts are focused on reducing the soft costs for solar power systems, which cause system prices in the U.S. to be double those of Germany.
Although Barry may be known for his outspoken work in the solar industry, he has hands-on experience with a wide range of energy saving technologies. He’s been doing residential energy audits since the punch card days, developed one of the first ground-source heat pumps in the early ‘80s, and always abides by the Laws of Thermodynamics.
Lead image: Green microphone via Shutterstock