Bavaria’s Solar Energy

A field of solar panels belonging to the town of Markt Kaufering, Bavaria.

Until recently, the state of Bavaria had special stimulus funding for individuals and businesses to buy solar panels in a certain period of time. My travels (or at least, what I see out the window while on the road or rails) confirm that quite a number of people took this offer and invested in solar energy.

Above, the town hall of Inning (the barriers are for some unrelated  construction work.) Below, a private house.

One may argue that the panels are ugly. However I find them more jarring in photos than in reality. They really are not distracting to the eye, certainly no more that satellite dishes and antennas.

This Aldi supermarket has its entire roof covered in solar panels, and a display of its rate of return just outside the entrance. It bears mentioning that Germany is not a country known for its sunny weather, and yet this is working. Solar farms don’t need to be in the desert.

Alas, since the end of this renewable-energy stimulus plan, German solar energy companies have been reporting losses. One hopes fervently that Bavaria will re-institute it, especially now that Germany is going off nuclear energy for real. I am a great believer in it, and happy that at least this country has put some money into giving the industry a kick-start.

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2 Responses to Bavaria’s Solar Energy

  1. MsMezzo says:

    I love the solar panel idea. When I was in Italy last year I saw very clever installations in the parking lots of grocery stores, malls, etc. They had constructed sheds to cover the cars (keeping them cool) and were completely covered by solar panels. Are solar panels used this way in Germany? If I were King of the Forest, I would make solar energy the way to go. Alas, I am not King of anything.

  2. Marcellina says:

    I have not seen that (yet) but it sounds like a great idea and a great way to make best use of the space available! America could do this too. It would be a huge return on a relatively small investment.

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