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Standards, Finance and Incentives
This two page brochure is an overview of the US Department of Energy’s Solar Energy Technologies Program. Written by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), this report summarizes the recent initiatives and strategic focus of DOE’s Solar Energy Technologies Program and touches on regulatory efforts to help the burgeoning concentrating solar power (CSP) market sector.
This report was from the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) Annual Meeting in October, 2009. The report is broken down to cover state incentives & policy trends, solar installation trends, net metering & interconnection updates & trends, and workforce development and training. For current policies that are mentioned to withstand solar growth, they mention the Energy Improvement and Reinvestment Act (part of the federal “bailout bill” in 2008) and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (part of the “stimulus bill” in 2009).
Solar thermal generation (with gas assist) has been shown to be cost competitive when compared to other similar fossil technologies providing comparable products, i.e. firm on-peak capacity and energy. The recently published CEC Cost Comparison Report concluded that, essentially, solar thermal generation with gas assist is cost competitive to combustion turbine technology when used in the same application (firm peaking).