New Breakthroughs in Anti-Solar Propaganda

Christian Roselund kindly wrote a debunking article about a post published last week titled “How Fast are the Costs of Solar Really Coming Down?“.

It was written by staff of the Breakthrough Institute, and it is full of false statements, but I’m repeating myself.

One of the false statements says that cost of solar in Germany is at “$2250/kW today”, Actually, it is already down to 1000 Euro a kW, which is around $1,300.

And that’s in Germany. Many locations worldwide have at least double of Germany’s solar resources. That of course means solar could cost the double per kW in such a location and still match Germany’s price per kWh. You would not know that from the Breakthrough anti-solar propaganda piece, of course.

Anyway, it’s progress that the enemies of solar like the Breakthrough Institute are now reduced to hoping that other countries will be unable to match Germany’s cost reductions. A couple of years earlier their tune was still “solar is too expensive”. That talking point has been retired.

They then try to ride the usual intermittency talking point, and manage to write this:

Without costly energy storage technologies that do not presently exist, Germany will not be able to generate much more than 10% of its total electricity from solar without curtailing or exporting not only its entire non-solar energy generation capacity, but also much of its solar generation capacity on sunny days.

Actually, storage technologies already exist, and are deployed right now. Batteries for households become increasingly competitive on a market where generating solar electricity costs half of buying it. Power to gas projects are sprouting up all over the country.

And while it is true that there will be more and more time slots where demand can’t keep up with supply and “Germany will need to curtail non-solar capacity”, that’s kind of the idea (except the curtailing won’t be for “non-solar”, but for “non-renewable” sources). We want to get away from fossil fuel generation. And Germany has rejected nuclear with near unanimity. So of course we want to curtail fossil fuel generation and replace nuclear with renewable, and that’s exactly what’s going to happen.


Published by kflenz

Professor at Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo. Author of Lenz Blog (since 2003,

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