Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Solar power saves the day during Australia's record heatwave

I enjoy watching the currently on-going Australian Open with all the top players gathered for a befitting occasion. For folks (including myself) who watch from the comfort of of their home the heatwave would not be an issue but for the spectators at the stadiums, including the players, 42oC is not a comfortable temperature at all to be in.

I read that one can actually fry eggs by cracking and spreading them on to flat metal surfaces. It's that hot!

Maria Sharafova, in one of her winning matches, lamented about the soaring temperature they have to play their tennis, where organiser as well as the players have no definite answer as to when should matches be played under covered stadium.

Temperatures across many parts of Australia have soared past 40oC for the last few days, melting plastic bottles where they stand. Photo credit: MICM Property

Solar power saves the day

While tennis players have wilted and bush fires have raged, solar power systems in Australia have come to the fore this week as the nation battles with the effects of the latest debilitating heatwave.

But it is Australia’s coal-fired power plants that have really been feeling the strain. As the middle of the day sees peak demand for power-hungry air conditioning units, the country’s traditional power supplies have had that demand alleviated by solar power systems.

Throughout the country, both rooftop and ground-mounted solar installations have upped their share of power use and generation, helping to rein in wholesale pricing and reduce the number of power outages.

At the midday peak last Wednesday, findings from the Australian Solar Council revealed that the state of South Australia drew 9.41% of its energy needs from solar systems. That figure was 9.13% for Western Australia, 8.64% for Queensland, 3.59% for New South Wales and 2.8% for Victoria.

Read what pv-magazine reported here. This is where I sourced the content of this article from.

TheGreenMechanics: While there are differences in opinion among energy players in Australia regarding 'unfair' benefit enjoyed by households with solar PV, there is clear indication that having your roof installed with solar power system helps in many ways than one.

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