The traditional utility business model versus solar energy : the transformation of the electricity system / von Éva Ottlakán
VerfasserOttlakán, Éva
Begutachter / BegutachterinBrauner, Günther
ErschienenWien, 2015
Umfangv, 69 Blätter : Illustrationen, Diagramme
HochschulschriftTechnische Universität Wien, Master Thesis, 2015
HochschulschriftDiplomatische Akademie Wien, Master Thesis, 2015
Schlagwörter (EN)electricity / solar energy / utility / strategy
URNurn:nbn:at:at-ubtuw:1-84711 Persistent Identifier (URN)
 Das Werk ist frei verfügbar
The traditional utility business model versus solar energy [1.89 mb]
Zusammenfassung (Englisch)

In this thesis, we will have a detailed look at how solar energy has impacted the dynamics of the traditional utility business model. Through looking at how solar energy grew in capacity and expanded to scale, we will see how it slowly moves into the utilities' radar. We will have a look at government incentives that supported the initial boost of solar energy, both on the industrial and the residential sides of generators and consumers. As residential solar begins to be paired with energy storage, more and more people have the potential to go off-grid, therefore becoming a major threat to utilities and their revenues. Utilities can react in a number of ways to this potential threat. They could either do nothing about it, or decide that it's a long-term threat only. They can also go out and legally fight back the spill over of solar energy through proposing subsidy cuts on the governmental level. Or utilities can decide to see solar energy and especially residential solar as a business opportunity and invest in it, or alternatively move into providing more consumer services - even as the provider of rooftop solar panel systems. As we see the dynamic between electricity consumer and the utility change, we slowly shift into a new world for electricity - one where the traditional rigid grid transforms into a community grid. We pose the question: is grid defection a short-term possibility? Or do the economics and policy changes point to a different conclusion? What is the future of the traditional utility business model and what role does solar energy play in it?