Biomass Power Plants are increasing rapidly as the costs of fossil fuels go up and the need for renewable energy is increasing.Biomass Power is attractive because of its clean character and supplies a large portion of the energy needs in rural communities.With advancements in gasifier technology and energy conversion,biomass power plants have become quite popular.Biomass Power Plants are increasing in scale from around 20-50 MW to more than 100 MW as the technology has advanced quite a bit.The only problem for these large plants is securing feedstock for these power plants and storing them.Biomass Energy has a number of advantages over conventional forms of energy and depending on the feedstock cost can be generated at prices on par with fossil fuels.Biomass Energy also leads to higher energy security as biomass is almost always secured locally.
Other states are looking to do so as well.Like other Solar Subsidy Programs elsewhere in Czech,Germany,Spain,Australia too has seen solar energy costs fall much faster than subsidies.This has led to a boom in solar installations as the returns become very high.These costs are ultimately passed on the customer electricity bills drawing howls from the states.Large Wind Energy Producers like Origin Energy have also seen the prices of RECs decrease so that is not feasible to build new wind farm projects.On top of all this confusion,the Australian government can’t make up its mind on a Carbon Tax which will help it to meet the 2020 20% Green Energy Target.
Solar Farms or Giant Solar Power Projects consisting of thousand of solar panels installed on acres of land are increasing rapidly in the USA.While the European governments are discouraging the use of large installations of solar panels,the US is going the opposite way in installing these power plants.The US government recently approved of a number of Solar Thermal Power Projects worth several gigawatt recently.
France has had a rocky relationship with solar energy.Unlike other European countries France gets a huge amount of electricity from renewable sources namely nuclear energy.Its electricity prices are one of the lowest and it even exports electricity to neighbors.So the driver for increasing solar electricity is quite low in France compared to others like Spain and Italy.However France has seen a massive boom in solar installations in 2010 making it the 7th largest market in the world.France installed over 720 MW of solar in 2010 and faces a massive backlog of applications.The government got overwhelmed and called a sudden stop to all applications.The French government stupidly blamed Chinese solar panels for the solar deluge when it was its faulty solar Feed in Tariff Policy which was too generous.
Note China’s Solar Market is a highly competitive and protected one with outside solar companies hardly having any presence similar to Japan’s market.First Solar which signed a massive gigawatt contract to build a plant in Ordos has seen only delays as Chinese solar manufacturers opposed the plant.First Solar is still trying to build the plant signing a new JV with one of China’s 5 big utilities.eSolar another CSP company got a contract to build a plant with China but till date construction does not seem to have begun there also.The Chinese government seems mostly interested in high-tech technology (First Solar,eSolar) rather than run of the mill players.Even these technology companies have failed to make much headway.Remains to be seen whether SkyFuel Succeeds.