Double Shot Of Jubbling: Solar Costs Fall in 2010 And More Wind Power Options

Rooftop Solar Panels and Xzeres Wind Turvine
For all of the outlying ideas for generating electricity, we keep coming back to solar and wind power based solutions and now they’re looking even more attractive. It’s all thanks to the economies of scale and these old school technologies are only going to get more affordable, efficient and creatively packaged.

Cost Of Solar Falls Again In 2010 – A study out of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory finds that the cost per kilowatt of solar has fallen again in 2010 thanks to improved manufacturing and product efficiency. California and New Jersey, which account for 87% of all solar installations, saw the largest gains as the price for solar dropped by 14 and 16% respectively. In 1998, the price per kilowatt for solar panels was $10.80 and in the first 10 months of 2010, the price per kilowatt has dropped to $6. Leasing options from companies like SolarCity and Sungevity have also made it more attractive for people looking to move toward solar. Gone are the days when installing solar meant you had to take out a second mortgage and shell out $25-40,000. CNET

Wind Turbine For Your Home? – If you’ve ever driven through Palm Desert CA, you probably have seen the huge collection of massive wind turbines. It’s unreal and distracting because it looks like a scene out of a Godzilla movie. A company out of Oregon wants to change our impression of wind power by manufacturing and maintaining more affordable and possibly residential friendly wind turbines. The company is Xzeres and their wind towers stand 60-100 feet with a rotor that is 24 feet in diameter. The size of Xzeres’s towers are in contrast to the 300 ft tall, 250 ft diameter wind turbines we’re used to seeing. Xzeres latest offering is similar to “lease to own” options found in the solar industry – they’ll install their wind turbine, you pay Xzeres’s for your electricity as if they were your utility company and then you own the turbine in 8 – 10 years. It’s a lease to own where the byproduct is electricity you would’ve paid for anyway. Now, if they could only make them look like pine trees….NY Times

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