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March 14th, 2009

Why European consumers are going green faster: Feed-in tariffs

Published on March 14th, 2009 | By: pwray@ceramics.org
Credit: Swift Rooftop Wind Turbines

Credit: Swift Rooftop Wind Turbines

While this isn’t a particularly new revelation, the New York Times has a new piece that provides a good overview of how the wide adoption of feed-in tariffs is providing an effective incentive for home owners to invest in solar, wind and other renewable energy sources. In brief, feed-in tariffs require utility companies to purchase energy from renewable sources at a premium price. This premium purchase price arguably provides a more accurate measure of what total electric production costs are when the effects of CO2 and other emissions and pollutants are added in. More importantly, the tariffs significantly shorten the payback time for consumer installations. Instead of payback periods of decades (if at all), paybacks can be a matter of a years.

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