Pferdeschorschi

By schorschi

Cool

The photo was taken at 16:51 from the house and as possibly even a staunch Brexit believer may accept, taken towards the West and the sinking sun.

The forest causes our PV to dramatically lose "power". The day's graphical report shows it goes from around 2.2 kWh at 16:30 to zero within 30 minutes, largely due to the trees. And we are lucky, a few years ago the 30m high firs were within 30m of the house.

Our panels are placed roughly 50/50 on the east and west sides of the roof, so although we have a total of 10 kWh potential, it only peaks at 7kWh in high summer. There is a bit of a "plan" behind this as we need to try and get the maximum generation possible throughout the whole day as using the electricity ourselves and storing it in the battery is more lucrative than selling it to the electricity companies. We get about €0.13c per kilowatt we sell but have to pay about €0.30c for any we buy.

I believe German electricity is the most expensive in the EU, due to the amount of subsidies poured into renewable energy and the shutting down of most of our nuclear plants following Fukushima. There are 7 reactors still in operation of the total of 28 built. Nuclear power accounts for around 13%. By the end of 2022, all will be closed. The government has also just agreed a timetable to shut down the filthy surface brown coal power stations which will take a little longer and not be cheap.

Our county is one of the big pushers to become self-sufficient in renewable energy and today there was a big do with some of the state government ministers taking part in our next door village, Westerheim, which is big on PV and biogas. They produce 2.5x more electricity than the use. The trick remains in getting it available when the people actually use it. It's moving forward and stands at the moment at 35% for the whole of Germany. Every little step counts even if we didn't do too well today as we only got to be 51% self-sufficient.

The central heating is working overtime, it dropping to well below -10°C at night. Which brings me to the real reason for the photo I chose today. The snow is simply not melting, not even when it is on the trees in direct sunshine. And as we noticed last week, the sun is getting back some power. I can't remember it being quite like this.

I suppose the good or bad news depending on your viewpoint is that by the weekend they are talking of +10°C and rain. I doubt though that many of our snow piles will disappear before April!

I was hoping to get out with Luna for a different walk in the lovely weather today and see if I could improve my photos from yesterday. But when I woke up after my afternoon post-lunch nap, she was gone. Perhaps tomorrow if the rain doesn't arrive.

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