Australia Watch

"The Australian government’s chief energy forecasting body has published a dramatic revision of its cost estimates, predicting that onshore wind and solar PV will deliver the cheapest forms of energy by 2030 – with solar PV dramatically cheaper than all other energy forms by 2050."  (Source).

July, 2014:  Wow....

October, 2012:  Australia flips switch on its first solar farm.  The farm's solar panel vendor "estimates as much as 3 GW to 5 GW of solar PV plants may be built in Australia by 2020."  (Source).

August, 2012:  Australian rooftop solar installations skyrocket. Money quote: "Australia installed more small-scale rooftop PV (systems less than 10kW) on households in 2011 than Germany, with 795MW vs 759MW.  It now has an estimated 1.7 gigawatts of solar PV installed on rooftops, and is expected to get to 2,000MW by the end of the year. The Australian Energy Markets Operator recently said there could be 12,000MW to 18,000MW of rooftop solar PV in the country by 2030. Sunwiz and Solar Business Services say 18,000MW is conceivable by 2022."

More significantly:

PV manufacturers and international installers now believe that Australia is on the cusp of becoming the leading market in the world – not necessarily the largest over time, because it will surely be overtaken by the likes of China, Japan and US in terms of absolute numbers in rooftop installations – but because it is the first where the market surges even without feed in tariffs, which have been removed from just about every state and territory in the country.

(Source).  The core dynamic?  No subsidies or Feed-In-Tariffs.  Just amp up electricity prices and people will find Solar PV worth doing.

7/12:  Projected 10% of all Aussie homes to have Solar PV.

Latest study on Solar PV's effects on Australian electricity usage.

Folks have proposed various ways to handle the solar power "variability" (solar-generated electricity fluctuates too much to be of any use to utilities, or so the utilities claim) issue. Here's an Australian Study of the problem. 

Here's one of those big massive projects that sounds like it'll eventually make my "Boondoggle Watch" page.