Locked post-fossil consumption of urban decentralized solar photovoltaic energy: A case study of an on-grid photovoltaic power supply community in Nanjing, China

Qiyan Wu, Xiaoling Zhang, Jingwei Sun, Zhifei Ma, Chen Zhou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Due to enhanced economic production as well as incentivized demanding supply management (DSM) strategies, solar photovoltaics (SPV) have experienced a phenomenal global annual growth rate but with a very limited contribution from the personal consumption sector, especially that of on-grid decentralized SPV. One of the reasons for this lies in the difficulties involved in unlocking the traditional production paradigm and lifestyle, based on centuries of conventional fossil-energy consumption. In response, this paper examines the case of Nine Dream Island in Nanjing, China, a pioneer of post-fossil emerging power supply communities providing on-grid SPV, to reveal the obstacles that lie beyond technological and economic factors involved. Empirical data including in-depth interviews illustrate the politico economic strategies of these communities in creating a new post-fossil production and consumption paradigm. In particular, it is suggested that, despite the National Development and Reform Commission's economic driving force in the form of 0.42 ¥/kW h state subsidies in Nanjing, the complex pattern of governance structures and institutional arrangement characteristics overwhelmingly impedes public acceptance of a low-carbon model of production and consumption. Overall, the paper helps to shed light on the development and adoption of SPV as a post-fossil consumption and production technology in new market countries where administration forces provide a more important role in creating a new path-dependence for the adaptation of innovation technologies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalApplied Energy
Volume172
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 15 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Fossil based energy lock-in
  • On-grid SPV supply
  • Post-fossil production and consumption
  • Solar energy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • Energy(all)
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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