Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

Or alternatively, that the market has a better grasp of the situation than the head of solar analysis at BloombergNEF. Just because she has 'head' and 'solar' in her title doesn't mean she is all-knowing about the solar market.

If solar actually represented a better deal companies would be falling over themselves to install solar panels everywhere. It is likely that there are important realities or risks that the analysts have missed.

Either that, or someone is going to make a killing installing solar panels on a lease-to-buy basis.

When you consider that governments spend trillions of dollars a year subsidizing fossil fuels (this is not an exaggeration), maybe that’s why it hasn’t been taken up despite it being cheaper? And because like any new technologies there are additional factors, such as fear of different and new, and entrenched interests pushing against the new efforts.


>When you consider that governments spend trillions of dollars a year subsidizing fossil fuels (this is not an exaggeration)

It is an exaggeration, and it's mostly on the consumption side, not production. Why does the OECD come up with $150-$200BB a year in subsidies? Why is the IEA estimate ~$400BB?:


The IMF report says a whopping $4.6TT of the $5.2TT are "externalities". I think we all agree externalities exist, but externalities are not subsidies, nor are they easy to price.

And not only are externalities not subsidies, but looking at what appears to be the original paper [0] it seems that fuels for on-road use area big focus.

Obviously, on-road fuel is not currently competing with solar panels.

[0] https://www.imf.org/~/media/Files/Publications/WP/2019/WPIEA...

Externalities that aren't priced in are distorting markets and the price mechanism in the same way as subsidies. Estimation certainly looks tricky, but I'd hope they at least get the order of magnitude right.

Markets cannot have a grasp of things because they are not people. Even if you view them as a form of group intelligence because they ostensibly involve people, a group optimises for what all of it's participants optimise for: Money, in this case. Sometimes not even money in the long term, but money in the short term.

Applications are open for YC Winter 2020

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact