Related Links

Below is a compilation of links related to renewable energy cost and cost modeling, renewable energy resources, market sector trends. There are also links to other related governmental and non-governmental organizations' Web sites.

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Financial Tools and Calculators
Renewable Costs and Data
Renewable Resource Estimators
Efficiency and Renewable Incentives
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Angel and Venture Capital Funding Resources
U.S. DOE Resources
Federal and State Regulatory Resources
International Energy Resources

Financial Tools and Calculators

The Cost of Energy Spreadsheet Tool (CREST) models were developed by Sustainable Energy Advantage with guidance from NREL. Three models are available for geothermal, solar, and wind. Users can select from three levels of complexity for inputs.

EU PV Platform was developed by ADEME (French Env & Energy Management Agency) as a Feed-in Tariff calculator. The depreciation schedule tied to life of project. Key metrics are defined and sample inputs are provided. This model will not accommodate U.S. tax incentives.

Gainesville FIT model developed by the Gainesville Regional Utilities, could be used to set solar FIT rates. The model shows a summary of capacity factor degradation and calculates estimated impact on annual fuel cost adjustment to ratepayers. The model inputs are not very detailed.

Geothermal Electricity Technology Evaluation Model (GETEM) was developed by Princeton Energy Resources International, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratory, and Idaho National Laboratory. This Model can be used to evaluate the economic feasibility of Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS). The model contains a detailed list of cost inputs and calculates levelized cost of energy for multiple technology types. There is substantial detail in system design & performance parameters, making this model best for advanced users.

Incentive Comparison Model was developed by Crossborder Energy for the Vote Solar Initiative. This model calculates the incentive amount necessary to provide the same project economics under three different policy scenarios and has a tab dedicated to description of mode. The Incentive Comparison Model calculates not only project incentives but also total program incentives paid. The model inputs are not very detailed.

Renewable Energy Transmission Initiative Cost of Generation Spreadsheet developed by Black & Veatch calculates the cost of generation for multiple technologies using fairly simple inputs. Minimizes Year-One Cost of Energy (COE) subject to equity return requirement, then calculates levelized cost of energy.

RETScreen was developed by the Canadian government. Evaluate economic feasibility of multiple technology types. RETScreen allows for alternate levels of input detail. Calculating the benefits of U.S. tax incentives could be difficult or impossible, and the model calculations are not obvious to the user.

Solar Advisor Model was developed by National Renewable Energy Laboratory; Sandia National Laboratory; and the Department of Energy. SAM provides consistent methodology for analysis across all solar technologies. The model also allows for a range of input options, sensitivity and optimization analyses, and output graphics.

Vermont Standard Offer Models was developed by Green Mountain Power Corp. and adapted by stakeholders in a regulatory process. The Vermont Standard Offer Models estimate & inform rate-setting for the Vermont Standard Offer Program. The models can take into account mini-perm refinancing, reserve accounts, and federal and state tax incentives. Some inputs are embedded in formulas, and cost inputs are highly aggregated.

The California Energy Commission Cost of Generation model has been developed and updated for the purposes of the California Public Utility Commissions Integrated Energy Policy Report. The present version of the Cost of Generation Model has preset data for 21 central station generation technologies-6 gas-fired, 13 renewable, nuclear, and coal-integrated gasification combined cycle-but has the ability to provide modified scenario data on existing technologies or to add additional technologies.

Renewable Costs and Data

Biomass Energy Data Book Produced by the Department of Energy. Contains information on biomass, biofuels, biopower, biorefineries, and feedstocks costs and other data.

Costs of Solar Power from Thermal Concentrators This trend graph shows the costs of energy from concentrating solar power.

Energy Technology Cost and Performance Data: an NREL webpage presenting a chart published in May 2009 indicating the recent cost estimates for renewable and other energy technologies.

Hydrogen Data Book published by the Department of Energy. This data book provides information on costs, as well as hydrogen properties, production, storage, fueling stations, pipelines, fuel cells, fuel cell vehicles, and hydrogen fuel quality.

Marine and Hydrokinetic Technology Database The U.S. Department of Energy's Marine and Hydrokinetic Technology Database provides up-to-date information on wave, tidal, current, and ocean thermal energy, and contains information on the various energy conversion technologies, companies active in the field, and development of projects in the water. Depending on the needs of the user, the database can present a snapshot of projects in a given region, assess the progress of a certain technology type, or provide a comprehensive view of the entire marine and hydrokinetic energy industry.

Market Data for Renewable Energy Projects and Programs at NREL: This webpage includes market data for renewable energy technologies and programs, presented in individual reports for each area. Data includes market penetration; industry trends; cost, price, and performance trends; policy and market drivers, as well as future outlook.

The Open PV Project provides a web-based resource for users to add their own PV installation data, browse PV data entered by others, and view statistics from the data that show current and recent trends of the PV market in the U.S, including cost trends.

PV DAQ (Photovoltaic Data Acquisition) is intended to support the educational and performance verification needs of each recipient organization while simultaneously providing high-quality raw data in support of NREL’s research and public outreach goals. Data is contributed to NREL by system owners through multiple data monitoring providers who see the benefit of providing high-quality monitoring data to to the PV research community. The public PVDAQ website provides both raw data and summary information consistent with international standards to the broader PV community.

Renewable Energy Databook – 2009 was published in 2010 by the Department of Energy. This resource provides data on the use, growth, capacity, and costs of renewable technologies in the United States and globally from 2000 through 2009.

Renewable Energy Databook – 2008 was published in 2009 by the Department of Energy. This resource provides data on the use, growth, capacity, and costs of renewable technologies in the United States and globally from 2000 through 2008.

Renewable Resource Estimators

The In My Backyard (IMBY) tool estimates the electricity you can produce with a solar photovoltaic (PV) array or wind turbine at your home or business. Homeowners, businesses, and researchers use IMBY to develop quick estimates of renewable energy production at locations throughout the continental United States, Hawaii, and northern Mexico. IMBY uses a map-based interface to allow you to choose the exact location of your PV array or wind turbine. Based on your location, system size, and other variables, IMBY estimates the electricity production you can expect from your system.

NREL's MapStore contains a variety of GIS resource estimates that could be used for initial feasibility studies.

PV Watts can be used to calculate how much energy will be produced by photovoltaic solar panels in a geographical area. It takes into account the amount of sun in the area and average electric rates.

Resource data Through this web page, NREL provides high-quality renewable energy resource data for U.S. and international locations.

Efficiency and Renewable Incentives

Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency DSIRE is a comprehensive source of information on state, local, utility, and federal incentives and policies that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency. DSIRE is an ongoing project of the N.C. Solar Center and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council.

Open EI's Incentives page The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has developed OpenEI and VIBE with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). NREL and DOE are committed to making this powerful open-data platform a success. As OpenEI evolves, we will encourage additional partners from the government, universities, industry, and the public/private sectors to join the effort.

Internal Revenue Service Summary of Energy Incentives for Individuals in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

NREL

Analysis NREL aims to increase the understanding of the current and future interactions and roles of energy policies, markets, resources, technologies, environmental impacts, and infrastructure. These analyses are used to inform decisions as energy-efficient and renewable energy technologies advance from concept to commercial application.

Department of Energy Data Reports This website has links to all of the Department of Energy's Market Data Reports for the technology programs. Also, find a link to the Federal Energy Management Reports, and the Weatherization and Intergovernmental Program reports

The Open PV Project The Open PV Mapping Project is a collaborative effort between government, industry, and the public that is compiling a comprehensive database of photovoltaic (PV) installation data for the United States. Data for the project are voluntarily contributed from a variety of sources including utilities, installers, and the general public. The data collected is actively maintained by the contributors and are always changing to provide an evolving, up-to-date snapshot of the US solar power market.

PV DAQ (Photovoltaic Data Acquisition) is intended to support the educational and performance verification needs of each recipient organization while simultaneously providing high-quality raw data in support of NREL’s research and public outreach goals. Data is contributed to NREL by system owners through multiple data monitoring providers who see the benefit of providing high-quality monitoring data to to the PV research community. The public PVDAQ website provides both raw data and summary information consistent with international standards to the broader PV community.

Resource data Through this web page, NREL provides high-quality renewable energy resource data for U.S. and international locations.

The Solar Advisor Model (SAM) is a performance and economic model for solar photovoltaics or concentrating solar power. SAM was developed by NREL analysts to facilitate decision making for people involved in the solar energy industry, ranging from project managers and engineers to incentive program designers, technology developers, and researchers. SAM makes it possible for solar energy professionals to analyze many types of systems (from solar PV, to CSP dish-Stirling, to power tower technology models) in the same modeling platform using consistent financial assumptions.

VIBE is the Virtual Information Bridge to Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy and is being developed by NREL.

Angel and Venture Capital Funding Resources

Clean Energy Alliance The welcomes new energy companies, venture firms, angel investors, nonprofits, government organizations, and others committed to supporting the clean energy industry.

Clean Energy Forum: The Forum features presentations from 34 emerging clean energy companies, provocative panels led by thought leaders, one-on-one meetings, and organized networking opportunities. It is the perfect venue for growing companies to prepare, refine, and present their business to a wide range of investors. The best presenters are awarded cash prizes and commercialization services from NREL. Collectively, companies who have presented at the Forum since 2003 have raised more than $3.4 billion in growth financing

National Renewable Energy Laboratory's Commercialization Assistance Program: The NREL Commercialization Assistance Program (NCAP) helps emerging companies overcome technical barriers to commercializing clean energy technology. The program specifically helps renewable energy and energy efficiency companies by providing free assistance or information to help small businesses with specific technology questions or needs.

PV Incubator: The Photovoltaic (PV) Technology Incubator projects within the Solar Energy Technologies Program focus on developing prototype PV components and systems and barriers to entry for 2012 commercialization. The goals of the projects include exploring the commercial potential of new manufacturing processes and products; fostering innovation and growth in the domestic PV industry; establishing an efficient and cyclic funding opportunity; and expanding and diversifying domestic "market-ready" PV technologies.

U.S. DOE Resources

Department of Energy Governmental department whose mission is to advance energy technology and promote related innovation in the United States.

Energy Information Administration of the Department of Energy: EIA provides a wide range of information and data products covering energy production, stocks, demand, imports, exports, and prices; and prepares analyses and special reports on topics of current interest.

Solar Energy Technologies Program (SETP) of the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office, Department of Energy: SETP focuses on developing cost-effective solar energy technologies that have the greatest potential to benefit the nation and the world. A growing solar industry also stimulates our economy by creating jobs in solar manufacturing and installation. The program is a co-funder of this website.

Federal and State Regulatory Resources

Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Department of the Interior deals with a number of siting and environmental issues that can affect large-scale renewable energy plants.

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission: Provides notices, major orders, and energy information for the electric, gas, oil, and hydro industries.

National Regulatory Research Institute NRRI begins its new phase, as an independent, nonprofit corporation supported by state commission dues payments.

North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) is the electric reliability organization (ERO) certified by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to establish and enforce reliability standards for the bulk-power system. NERC develops and enforces reliability standards; assesses adequacy annually via a 10-year forecast, and summer and winter forecasts; monitors the bulk power system; and educates, trains and certifies industry personnel. ERO activities in Canada related to the reliability of the bulk-power system are recognized and overseen by the appropriate governmental authorities in that country.

International Energy Resources

Clean Energy Solutions Center includes a vast curated database of international clean energy reports, data and tools on policy best practices, impacts, potentials, and scenarios; free technical policy assistance to policymakers and key staff; and clean energy policy trainings, among other services. The Solutions Center audience consists of policymakers, energy analysts and advisors, energy entrepreneurs and investors, non-governmental organizations, and international organizations. The Clean Energy Solutions Center was designed and is supported by a partnership between the Clean Energy Ministerial (http://www.cleanenergyministerial.org/) and the United Nations inter-agency energy mechanism (UN-Energy), and NREL is currently the operating agent.

Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands is the largest Dutch, publicly funded energy research center.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) is an intergovernmental organization which acts as energy policy advisor to 28 member countries in their effort to ensure reliable, affordable and clean energy for their citizens. With a staff of around 220, mainly energy experts and statisticians from its 28 member countries, the IEA conducts a broad program of energy research, data compilation, publications and public dissemination of the latest energy policy analysis and recommendations on good practices.

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) is an intergovernmental organization for promoting the adoption of renewable energy worldwide.

Fraunhofer's Energy Web site is Europe's largest application-oriented research organization. The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft carries out research in hundreds of technology fields and makes the results available as patents, licenses, further training opportunities, and particularly in the form of research projects commissioned by industry. Innovation is dynamic – topics and research areas continue to adapt to market requirements and technologies.