I'm not a big fan of Elon Musk, but let's not get political.
I do however, want to point out Buffalo .. its troubles with Solar City .. and its troubles with Elon Musk.
Key (non-disputed / non-political points)
- Tesla did not hire local workers, and did not hold up on its end for diversity of work-force - SolarCity received 750$ million in the Billion to Buffalo at a time it hadn't operated at a profit in over 2 years (I believe) - Ciminelli, Buffalo's prior largest construction company that built SolarCity was charged with bid rigging / bribery by the Federal Government and it has all but folded up shop. - Panasonic / Tesla agreement / partnership existed in 2006, yet Cuomo said he brokered this deal (fabrication)
The Riverbend site that SolarCity started has all but been successful in Erie County. That's my 2c, and the above is factual, non-disputed points.
So .. my real question, is why is this not brought to the national level for discussion to what Elon is doing to communities like Buffalo, where I live? That's my question ...
I really love the work that Tesla is doing in this area, and wish them all the luck in the world, but if the estimates in the article are even close ($57K for a Tesla roof, $41K for a tile roof with a small solar panel, $22K for a conventional asphalt roof) it's hard for me to see this being cost effective.
Every time Tesla talks about a "gigafactory" like this one, or the one in Reno, I'm reminded of the episode of The Simpsons, where a snake oil salesman comes to town and sells Springfield on the idea of building a monorail.
It's a factory. Yes, a big factory. But not bigger than a hundred that came before it. And even if it was, it doesn't warrant a new word.
I like the idea of a solar roof, but the incentives just don’t work out where I live. We have lots of sun, so I could plausibly produce quite a bit of excess power... but my electric company won’t buy it from me. The most they’ll do is let me offset my own consumption.
So my upside is capped at getting free electricity, which’ll save me $100-150 a month. That’s not nothing, but it’ll take a LONG time to recoup the cost.
Okay, the tiles are made of glass. Does the carbon footprint of the fabrication different much from terracotta tiles?
Looking forward to them being available in the UK, if I had't just re-roofed my house with recycled slates I'd have used these, I didn't use the option from Solar Century because they look terrible compared with the glass slates from Tesla: https://www.solarcentury.com/homes-uk/our-offer/sunstation/ -- however I do have a lot of respect for the founder of the company http://www.energylivenews.com/2015/01/12/solarcentury-founde...
OT: Is there a reliable Firefox to block these annoying Bloomberg auto-play videos?
Why do they call them all a "gigafactory"? This is getting ridiculous since the subject "gigafactory" in the article is a million square feet and 500 employees.
The postmortem comment to this thread, is kind of buried in the distressed communities report posted today from The Atlantic.
Page 35, pretty much sums it all up.
Just over two years ago solar panels were prohibitively expensive for me. I read a couple of Instructables showing how to make your own panel using solar cells. I ordered the solar cells. The plan was to cover the whole garage roof with solar cells.
The price of solar panels dropped. Now I have a box full of solar cells and it just isn't worth it to go the DIY route. The Solar Roof is out of my price range.
...Solar shingles will cost more than a conventional roof along with photovoltaic panels -- but not “wickedly so,” said Hugh Bromley, a New York-based Bloomberg New Energy Finance analyst. He estimates a Tesla roof would cost about $57,000 for a 2,000-square-foot house
From where I sit that is wickedly more expensive. I had a new composite roof installed 2 years ago for $2,900
Why not put the solar panels on the cars themselves?
Makes them charge somewhat when parked on the street or in an open parking lot :)