In recent years, the idea of solar energy has gone from an expensive experiment to something that can play a positive role in lowering ongoing power bills. This transition has been illustrated in recent figures published by Navigant Research and could be of real value to enterprise leaders looking to add innovation to their operations this year.
According to the figures, the global revenue from solar PV installations will top $1.2 trillion by 2024. As a result of higher demand for solar PV systems from both the public and private sectors, more affordable pricing/oversupply and more industry knowledge, this market is expected to soar in the coming years.
The global revenue from solar PV installations will top $1.2 trillion by 2024.
Senior research analyst at Navigant Research Roberto Rodriguez Labastida explained this concept in more detail.
"Solar PV and renewable energy generation as a whole is a policy-driven industry," he noted in a January 22 media statement.
"Legislation and regulation regarding solar PV development are being driven by increased concerns about the environment and greenhouse gas emissions, as well as by a desire for greater energy independence and to spur job growth and entrepreneurial opportunities in emerging parts of the economy."
Navigant Research notes the expansion of concepts such as solar leases and green bonds as positives for the industry and is predicting further growth moving forward.
Solar adoption in Australia
Of course, Australia is one of the leading countries when it comes to solar adoption, both with consumers and businesses. According to the Climate Council, around 1 million rooftop solar PV systems were installed across the country as of 2013 – a tremendous increase considering just 8,000 were operating in 2007.
In The Critical Decade 2013: Climate change science, risks and responses report, Queensland was revealed as the state leader, followed by NSW and Victoria. However, solar energy remains a focus of the entire country and the industry is growing as a result.
Limitations of solar energy
Unfortunately, the supporting technology around solar energy is still very limited. This means that while it is effective during the day, clients and business leaders need other solutions for the night and through periods when there is cloud cover.
For example, if your hospital, health facility or hotel loses power during the night, there could be significant consequences on your institution. As such, this is where the concepts of cogeneration and trigeneration become important considerations.
According to the Climate Council, these are "extremely efficient technologies", with the authority stating that cogeneration processes could be close to 80 per cent more productive than normal grid services. Additionally, cogeneration technology produces 60 per cent less carbon emissions than its counterparts.
It is also important to remember that these technology concepts allow organisations to reduce dependency on the main grid, decreasing energy costs and increasing power security – ideal in Australia's unpredictable weather environment.
"With enough demand for the heat and electricity generated by these technologies, as well as a supportive economic and regulatory environment, cogeneration and trigeneration can be expected to help reduce pressure on the national electricity grid," the Climate Council explained.
How can Optimal Group help?
As one of the leading providers of Capstone MicroTurbines, Optimal Group can help ensure your business or facility has cheap, clean and reliable power. Rather than relying on the often inconsistent grid, our technology has the capability to prevent against grid failures and deliver consistent power every time it is needed.
Our microturbines run on natural gas, propane or biogas, clean options that enable smart power opportunities.