Home > Uncategorized > Energy prices: two trends (2 graphs)

Energy prices: two trends (2 graphs)

from Merijn Knibbe


Stand out of my sunlight.”     Diogenes


Graph 1. The long term trend of solar panel prices


Graph 2. The long term trend of oil prices


Latest news:

Over the last year, prices for solar panels have fallen 50 percent. In the U.S., falling prices spell competition, and many solar providers are hustling to position themselves to take advantage of a rapidly changing solar industry. While solar panel manufacturers have taken a hit from the 50-percent reduction caused by the glut of supplies, home solar contractors are seeing their profits rise. SolarCity, the nation’s largest residential solar installer, is expected to initiate a public offering this year … Homeowners have enjoyed lower installation costs as well. According to the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab’s Tracking the Sun report, the cost of installing home PV systems has dropped 43 percent over the last dozen years


Fun fact:

“Diogenes was born in the Greek colony of Sinope on the south coast of the Black Sea, either in 412 BCE or 404 BCE.[2] Nothing is known about his early life except that his father Hicesias was a banker.[5] It seems likely that Diogenes was also enrolled into the banking business aiding his father. At some point (the exact date is unknown) Hicesias and Diogenes became embroiled in a scandal involving the adulteration or defacement of the currency,[6] and Diogenes was exiled from the city.[7] This aspect of the story seems to be corroborated by archaeology: large numbers of defaced coins (smashed with a large chisel stamp) have been discovered at Sinope dating from the middle of the 4th century BCE, and other coins of the time bear the name of Hicesias as the official who minted them.”


  1. s h a r o n
    March 12, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    Something seems always to be standing in my sunlight here on the central Oregon coast.
    I’m pasty pale, with moss overtaking everything in the yard (and growing between my toes).

  2. murrayv
    March 15, 2012 at 5:06 pm

    The green dotted trend line runs from a peak to a valley.m Just using the peaks, a more realistic price might be near $3.00/w. The valley pricing we are seeing now results from government subsidized over expansion of capacity in China with resulting dumping. The cost declinen is good, but I think the curve shown needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

    • merijnknibbe
      March 17, 2012 at 10:22 am


      Agree abut the $3,–. But note that the prices are in current and not in ‘real’ dollars. The decline in ‘real’ dollars is larger (twice as large?).

  3. July 13, 2012 at 6:26 pm

    Definitely can’t argue with the spike towards the end of the second graph.

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