What's That Musky Smell?

Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach

Well, the man who has made billions with a “b” by sponging off of your taxpayer dollars, the man you can always find face-down at the government trough, is at it again.

elon-musk-solar-shingles

Elon Musk now says that his whiz-bang glass solar roofing shingles will be, get this, cheaper than a “normal” roof, viz:

Musk told the crowd that he had just returned from a meeting with his new solar engineering team. Tesla’s new solar roof product, he proclaimed, will actually cost less to manufacture and install than a traditional roof—even before savings from the power bill. “Electricity,” Musk said, “is just a bonus.”

If Musk’s claims prove true, this could be a real turning point in the evolution of solar power. The rooftop shingles he unveiled just a few weeks ago are something to behold: They’re made of textured glass and are virtually indistinguishable from high-end roofing products. They also transform light into power for your home and your electric car.

“So the basic proposition will be: Would you like a roof that looks better than a normal roof, lasts twice as long, costs less and—by the way—generates electricity?” Musk said. “Why would you get anything else?”

Make no mistake: The new shingles will still be a premium product, at least when they first roll out. The terra cotta and slate roofs Tesla mimicked are among the most expensive roofing materials on the market—costing as much as 20 times more than cheap asphalt shingles.

Much of the cost savings Musk is anticipating comes from shipping the materials. Traditional roofing materials are brittle, heavy, and bulky. Shipping costs are high, as is the quantity lost to breakage. The new tempered-glass roof tiles, engineered in Tesla’s new automotive and solar glass division, weigh as little as a fifth of current products and are considerably easier to ship, Musk said.

First off, glass is heavy. I’m not buying for one minute that they would be cheaper to ship than asphalt shingles, for example. And I can guarantee you that the “quantity lost to breakage” will be greater than with asphalt shingles. If our cell phones have taught us anything, it is that even the toughest “Gorilla Glass” is still … well … glass. So the first conclusion is that for Elon, a “normal” roof is either slate or terra-cotta tile … hey, he’s one of the elite, cut him some slack, he likely hasn’t lived in a house with an asphalt shingle roof or an aluminum roof in a while …

Will Elon’s roof be lighter than terracotta? Perhaps … but at this point we only have his word. But in any case, I greatly doubt that the largest cost of a slate roof is shipping … digging the slate out of the ground is a major cost.

Next, he’s conveniently omitted the cost of the batteries you’d need to make the system work, as well as the inverter. His 14KWhr “BerlinWall” batteries, or whatever they’re called, are far from cheap at $5,500 a pop … even if you can get by with only one battery, it is still more expensive by itself than a 40-year asphalt shingle roof. And if he is worried about breakage when shipping terra-cotta, shipping those babies won’t be either cheap or easy.

Also, he’s blowing smoke about lifetime. An asphalt shingle roof replacement will last forty years and cost something like $3.80 per square foot. A slate roof replacement will cost about five times that. Musk is claiming his solar panels will last longer than slate??? … how on earth would he even know if that were true? And what lasts longer than slate, it’s freakin’ stone, for heaven’s sake.

Next, firemen hate rooftop solar for a good reason. Think about having to punch a hole into a roof to get inside when the rest of the house is on fire … you do NOT want to be punching through glass solar panels hooked up to an inverter and a giant battery. In fact, if such a house is on fire, the battery is both a toxic hazard and an explosive hazard, while the roof is a no-go zone …

And because that is the case, your insurance costs will go up, something you’d never even consider with a normal roof.

Next, these solar shingles will be much more difficult to install, and thus much costlier, than a regular roof, involving electricians, special installers, and other high-priced folks.

Finally, the cost of solar panels has fallen to where it is now about a buck a watt, which works out to about $15 per square foot just for the panel itself. This raw material cost is more than the INSTALLED cost for slate roofing. And while Musk might reduce that, I’d be shocked if he cut it much. In fact, if Musk could reduce the square-foot cost of solar panels, why is he not making panels themselves with his new glass technology? I leave the answer to the reader.

Net result? It’s the usual story. When Musk’s lips are moving he either counting how much money he has screwed out of the American public, or he’s lying about his upcoming products … the only good news is that with the new Administration, we can only hope that his long gravy-train ride is over.

However, he is a very, very smart man, so I wouldn’t be surprised to find him cozening the public out of yet more money before he runs out of suckers. Nobody ever lost money underestimating the intelligence of the American greenoisie, and Musk has made a science out of playing to their worst fears.

Finally, do electric cars have an economically viable role to play in our transportation system? My answer, which may surprise some, is yes, quite possibly … but we should not make some guy insanely wealthy by subsidizing sparky cars which are NOT economically viable. If Musk is so damn smart, then let him prove it in the marketplace like anyone else. The government should not be in the business of supporting one solution over the other, no matter how wonderful the government’s intentions are, no matter if they are liberal or conservative, no matter what good outcome they blithely predict.

The solution is simple, and might even start soon. It is to

STOP SUBSIDIZING INEFFICIENT TECHNOLOGIES THAT ARE NOT READY FOR MARKET!!

Regards to all,

w.

My Usual Request: Misunderstandings start easily and can last forever. I politely request that commenters QUOTE THE EXACT WORDS YOU DISAGREE WITH, so we can all understand your objection.

My Second Request: Please do not stop after merely claiming I’m using the wrong dataset or the wrong method. I may well be wrong, but such observations are not meaningful until you add a link to the proper dataset or an explanation of the right method.

The Math: At present, Musk has received $4.9 billion dollars in taxpayer subsidies. In return he has delivered cars that are so expensive that the wealthy buyers of such cars get their own personal subsidy in the form of a tax deductions.

At this point, are we supposed to say “Thanks, Elon”?

Meanwhile, in the developing world, WWFA says a village-sized water well costs about $8,000 to put in … so the money we’ve wasted on Musk and his sparky cars would buy clean water wells for more than half a million developing communities.

I doubt that folks in those communities would say “Thanks, Elon” if they knew about that Faustian bargain …

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November 19, 2016 2:59 pm

Ever seen what a hailstorm does to a shingle roof given the right caliber of incoming hail? Just imagine what it will do to glass. Cheers –
http://stormstopperroofing.com/faq/roofing-hail-damage-asphalt-shingles/
http://inspectapedia.com/roof/Roof_Hail_Damage_Identification.php

Reply to  agimarc
November 19, 2016 3:15 pm

What about in the winter when the roof is perpetually covered by snow? What about the waste of material on the side of the roof not facing South (or North in the S hemisphere)? Will they have dummy tiles that look the same, cost the same, but don’t function?

george e. smith
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 19, 2016 3:32 pm

Well Elon should plan to put his solar shingles on his Mars train. It’s going to be out in space for a while, so it will need a way to gather solar energy.
g

PiperPaul
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 19, 2016 4:50 pm

Yeah, but the panels will go from 0-60 in 2.4 seconds! I bet you didn’t consider that!

Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 19, 2016 5:34 pm

co2isnotevil, Haven’t you figured it out yet? They are ALL dummy tiles. The only thing that is real is the Government subsidies.

Hans
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 20, 2016 6:00 am

And what about the sun or the lack of it.
This time of year it infrequently appears.
I live in Langley, British Columbia and I have a rain gauge which indicates that in my back yard it has been raining for 39 consecutive days and counting.
Not much solar happening here.

Brooks Hurd
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 20, 2016 9:18 am

There are major issue with solar power. There are off-sets between peak power production and peak usage. The diurnal off-set can be handled by installing batteries, but there is also a seasonal off-set. The time of year for peak power production and peak usage is off-set by roughly 6 months. Obviously this seasonal off-set is reduced for people living close to the equator, however for residents of Europe, North America, East Asia (not SEA), Australia, NZ, southern Africa and southern South America the seasonal off-set is substantial.
A high air conditioning load does increase summer power usage which would reduce the seasonal off-set. One sparsely discussed issue for photovoltaic power is that the power conversion efficiency for polycrystalline silicon cells (like the ones the Mr. Musk’s company sells) drops with increasing temperature. Solar power production is reduced by time of day, time of year, snow cover, clouds, and mid day temperatures.

george e. smith
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 20, 2016 12:40 pm

Well the significant words in the solar energy (free clean green renewable) story are : ” per square meter “. and by the look of ‘loni’s tile, somewhat less that half of the area actually knows what a photon is.
homo sapiens sapiens evidently is ” self aware ” if I understand ancient mediaeval Roman, which I don’t. So maybe that means ” is aware of himself “. Well that surely is the hero of our story.
I dunno if there ever was a ” thinking man “, but evidently this isn’t one.
A thinking man, who also understands non imaging optics, and diffraction gratings / Fresnel lenses / prisms, might get the idea that a suitable Fresnel / grating structure, could be cheaply molded and designed to convert near normal incidence radiation, into a near grazing diffracted beam, so that his glass receiver could have a near grazing auxiliary beam impinging on it from one or two side antennas, instead of wasting that surface area on optically inactive terra cotta puffery.
Committing one’s valuable roof area to surfaces that are less than the highest possible solar conversion efficiency, is lunacy. The number of peak KW’s needed is not huge, but if you put up low efficiency junk panels or tiles, it doesn’t matter how cheap they are.
G

bit chilly
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 20, 2016 4:16 pm

heavy materials are used for roof tiles for a reason , i hate to see a street after a storm when the homes have had these installed.

Wrusssr
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 20, 2016 4:58 pm

” . . . been raining for 39 consecutive days and counting . . .”
Not to worry. The Musker also offers a quick-pop house-size Kevlar umbrella to keep rain and hail off the glass shingles. All part of the package.

Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 20, 2016 7:09 pm

CO2… ,
If the roof has a certain slope, it can be heated for a short moment causing the snow to slide down.
By using a west/east orientation, one can harvest more sunlight (or get sunlight in the afternoon when the morning was cloudy, but the total price will go up.
Anyway, the price has to be low, but Musk says, the price will be the same as a convetional roof, incluing subsidies.
The really good thing is the design. We have so much ugly solar roofs; These may look much better.

Doug Bunge
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 21, 2016 6:23 am

Yes, they will have dummy tiles that look the same.

ChadB
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 21, 2016 6:47 am

Snow: Pitch the roof so that it sheds snow. Since the material is glass it should shed fairly easily
Shatter: Yes, phone glass shatters fairly easily, but then the thickness is measured in microns. If the quartz is several mm thick that becomes a bit less of a problem.
North Facing: I imagine that yes, there would be dummy tiles that don’t function and cost less.
That said – still probably not worth installing. The cost of solar is going down so fast that if I had the choice of buying a roof right now, or waiting a year and watching the price come down 10% I would foot the electric bill for a year to catch the decline. Problem is the same would be true next year. And the year after that.

MarkW
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 21, 2016 7:46 am

East and west are a problem too, since the roof will only see sunlight for half the day.
God forbid your neighbor to the east or west grow a tall tree.

MarkW
Reply to  co2isnotevil
November 21, 2016 7:50 am

ChadB, the thicker the glass, the lower the efficiency and the higher the weight.

bruce
Reply to  agimarc
November 19, 2016 3:35 pm

My thought too, but apparently they tested these “shingles” by dropping ten pound weights on them, seems legit. My reading implies 20x the cost of asphalt, that means an average home runs $100K. So yes until you are in a multi million dollar home, price is an issue. Musk’s claim was his new product was equable cost wise with high end roofing surfaces. Slate, maybe copper sheet? The fireman’s issue will be more than a stumbling point.

Reply to  bruce
November 19, 2016 5:11 pm

Great!
Only, tempered glass is relatively impervious to impacts; think car windshields.
What easily breaks tempered glass are chips, scratches and stress across weak areas, like corners. One chip, one scratch, one broke corner and it is a pile of little chips if tempered correctly.
Glass chips are not the kinds of things one want immediately around a house. Bad for feet, bad for tires, bad for birds, impossible to easily pick up.

lee
Reply to  bruce
November 19, 2016 7:08 pm

You ever see emergency crews breaking car windscreens? A couple of sharp taps with a small device and you are through. The tempering makes it easy to remove the rest of the glass though.

schitzree
Reply to  bruce
November 19, 2016 9:13 pm

The Fireman issue (not being able to cut through them like a asphalt and plywood roof) is less of a problem when you compare them to slate roofs.
The other Fireman issues (producing high voltage electricity that you can’t shut off by cutting the main) is much more of a problem. I figure if rooftop solar ever truly becomes common there will need to be some kind of shutdown available, ether automatic or preferably on demand.

markl
Reply to  schitzree
November 19, 2016 9:25 pm

Emergency shut offs on the roof for PV panels are required in my city.

yarpos
Reply to  bruce
November 19, 2016 10:05 pm

“Glass chips are not the kinds of things one want immediately around a house. Bad for feet, bad for tires, bad for birds, impossible to easily pick up.”
At our place roof water becomes drinking water. Floating glass chips in drinking water not want.

benofhouston
Reply to  bruce
November 19, 2016 11:06 pm

Yeah, those are a requirement, but while it breaks the circuit, you still have high voltage innards of cells rapidly generating due to the light of the fire. They become capacitors that can arc whenever anything comes close.

Leo Smith
Reply to  bruce
November 19, 2016 11:32 pm

You cant shut off a solar panel any more than you can shut off a battery.
All you can do is break the connections between panels so that high volatile series stacks no longer exist.
Anyway. solar is probably dead in the water.
It has a sort of niche application in very hot places to run air con, but that’s it really.

TerryS
Reply to  bruce
November 20, 2016 2:20 am

If the 10 pound weight was flat if probably would not break it. Sometimes its shape rather than weight that matters.comment image

Steve Fraser
Reply to  bruce
November 20, 2016 7:28 am

ATheoK: The strength of the windshield is from the plastic between the 2 sheets of Glass. A purely tempered glass, when hit sharply by a small object, will crack into a thousand pieces… Much more safe to deal with than great sharp shards.

george e. smith
Reply to  bruce
November 20, 2016 2:33 pm

So where do you find glass (chips) that float in on or around water ??
Take drinking water off top, not off bottom where glass chips lie.
g

MarkW
Reply to  bruce
November 21, 2016 7:51 am

10 pounds, but from what height? Also what was the “shingle” on when the weight was dropped on it?

MarkW
Reply to  bruce
November 21, 2016 7:55 am

Roof shutoffs, just de-energize the lines inside the house. The lines on the roof itself are still hot.

Geoff
Reply to  agimarc
November 19, 2016 3:59 pm

Like it or not there is a lot of government funded home building required on Mars. Light weight, electric roofing will be a requirement, (there is no grid), in order to save the Marsian environment from CO2. It may increase the air temperature from -165 to -164.9. This would be catastrophic for life on Mars. Especially as we don ‘t yet know what lives there. So if we start run away global warming and then never discover any life forms we will “know” we killed such and are responsible for Marsian genocide.
Milking the Earth’s economy to pay for Marsian rent seekers is the perfect Keynesian outcome for the US economy. It may even be possible to enlist a larger army on Mars to “protect” it from threats from ……. the yellow and red perils! If you need to collect taxes that do nothing good, for rent seekers who have no business model and nothing to do, you will need a gun to collect. The down side for this economic model is its difficult to collect taxes from rent seekers.

NW sage
Reply to  Geoff
November 19, 2016 5:26 pm

Actually, since the earth is considered “blue”, the blue peril is the one it needs protection against!

Reply to  Geoff
November 19, 2016 8:23 pm

Lee
The best way to break a vehicles window is a center punch.
I always carried one in my bunker coat when I was a firefighter.

MarkW
Reply to  Geoff
November 21, 2016 7:58 am

Too late to save the Martian atmosphere from CO2. It’s already 100% CO2.

Windsong
Reply to  agimarc
November 19, 2016 4:45 pm

I think a demonstration project in the Dakotas would be in order. A thorough inspection after a hammering from softball sized hail would help me decide if this a good idea. 😉
http://www.nssl.noaa.gov/education/svrwx101/hail/

BFL
Reply to  agimarc
November 19, 2016 8:31 pm

Asphalt shingle roof at 40years?? I’ve not seen a standard 3 tab last past 20 (pushing it) and most are generous at 15 years.

David in Michigan
Reply to  BFL
November 19, 2016 9:57 pm

Yeah, I saw the 40 year statement too. I agree, about 20 years for a 3 tab asphalt roof is average + or – 5 years. Regardless, they are good enough and the least expensive. Most people will move on before they need a new roof.
However, I agree with Eshenbach’s overall analysis. Musk is gaming the system.

schitzree
Reply to  BFL
November 19, 2016 10:05 pm

I don’t think I’ve SEEN a standard 3 – tab roof get put on in nearly a decade. Everyone around here in Indiana has gone over to Architectural shingles (or as we call them, Dimensionals) and I really do believe you might get 40 years out of some of them. Course, they market them as 50 or even 60 year shingles. <¿<
We just reroofed my sisters place last year. Went with stone covered steel, interlocking. They're supposed to be good for up to 100mph winds, which is handy when the occasional twister near-misses you. She had a little F1 touch down through the field a couple years ago. Lost a few patches of shingles and some siding. Then it crossed the road and took out the neighbors barn, but at least missed their house.
Weather can be a real bitch, no CAGW needed. High Winds, Hale, Freezing Cold and Scorching Sun. All do their best to beat a house down. The roofing materials we use today all have their good and bad points, Asphalt is relatively cheap and easy to replace, and replace it you will. Metal, Slate and Terra Cotta cost more and are harder to work with, but are more durable. Rubber or Tar flat roofs work relatively poorly and need almost yearly maintenance, but can cover a huge area without needing to be peeked into the stratosphere. It's all about tradeoffs.
These Glass Solar shingles sound like you'll be trading a lot of money and durability for a little bit of electricity and a lot of Green good feels. Needless to say, I doubt you'll be seeing them on an Indiana farmhouse anytime soon.

Reply to  BFL
November 20, 2016 7:30 am

Asphalt shingles are common in Wyoming. Some are supposed to be good for wind above 100 mph. I’m not sure if they are—mine are not rated that high, so I still pick up the ones blown off and periodically replace the missing ones. There used to be T-Lock shingles which were better in wind, but insurance companies hated them because the whole roof had to be replaced if the shingles were damaged. I wonder about the solar shingles or even some of the high-end roofing materials, which could have the same problem. Insurance costs must be very high. (A forty year lifespan on asphalt shingles does seem unrealistic. Perhaps if you never have hail, high wind, etc, you might get that many years.)

Reply to  BFL
November 20, 2016 1:03 pm

BFL – The asphalt shingles on my last house have been there 30 years and not yet due for replacement; my current house was built 14 years ago, and the asphalt shingles look like new. Mind you, I live at 52 N so they are not subject to extreme heat like California or Arizona and they are high quality shingles. I had a third house with high quality shingles that are 36 years old and other than some repairs done due to hail damage, they too are not in need of replacement. I suspect the quality of the shingles, exposure to the sun and latitude are big issues in the longevity of asphalt shingles.

Sunderlandsteve
Reply to  agimarc
November 20, 2016 2:08 am

But you don’t understand, if we all buy his roof the climate will mend itself and there won’t be any hail, it will only rain where it is and the sun will shine gently on a greatful populace.

Sunderlandsteve
Reply to  Sunderlandsteve
November 20, 2016 2:25 am

rain where it is needed….doh

joe
Reply to  Sunderlandsteve
November 20, 2016 3:38 am

You left off the rainbow-colored, agave-flavored, unicorn poop!

MarkW
Reply to  agimarc
November 21, 2016 7:45 am

How long till Griff pops up and starts touting Musk’s statement as proof that roof top solar is economic and here to stay.

Mario Lento
Reply to  agimarc
November 22, 2016 2:45 pm

agimarc:
I agree with the sentiments of the article completely. However, tempered glass dose just fine in most hail storms. I’ve driven through them at 60mph and never damaged a windshield.

JimB
November 19, 2016 3:01 pm

The left wants to do away with all fossil fuels. Imagine fighting WWIII with electric tanks, airplanes, jeeps (whoa, needs a five-hour charge, Sarge!) etc.

yarpos
Reply to  JimB
November 20, 2016 2:57 am

but there will be no more wars because rainbows and unicorns and lovely pre industrial perfect climate

Climate Heretic
Reply to  JimB
November 20, 2016 3:16 pm

Whether fossil fuels are done away entirely by greens or whoever, or fossil fuels run out. It does not matter one iota.
Prediction, Molten Salt Reactors will become the main source of power[1] or IAEA seeks to increase multilateral cooperation on molten salt reactor concept[2].
So? If and it’s a big if, that CAGW is true, (Not). Then by virtue of the above prediction, then CAGW is dead and buried permanently.
Solar panels will become moot. They will have their niches and uses. In the mean time let everyone know what Elon Musk is upto.
Regards
Climate Heretic
[1] http://www.nextbigfuture.com/2016/11/17-countries-cooperating-on-molten-salt.html
[2] https://dailyenergyinsider.com/industry/2212-iaea-seeks-increase-multilateral-cooperation-molten-salt-reactor-concept/

Admin
November 19, 2016 3:01 pm

In my hometown Hervey Bay most of the roofs are made of steel. Glass would never cope with the tropical hailstorms.

Reply to  Eric Worrall
November 20, 2016 5:05 am

Eric, not sure if they understand that in USA. It used to be called corrugated galvanised iron roofing sheets but steel is the correct term. BHP Lysaght (now Bluescope Lysaght) use the term “Colorbond” steel roofing.which has coloured zinc power coated oven baked paint. They last at least 50 years. In dry areas the old galvanised iron sheets have lasted over 100 years. The cost is about $A20/ sq m.but can get plain galvanised at down to $A11/ sq m. Common sheets size are 4×8 ft and 4x12ft but one can get lengths of 24ft or longer delivered on semi-tailers This is the recommended roofing for housing in cyclone prone areas along the Queensland coast. The garage/shed I erected at my place is designed for an Aus cat 3 (US designation Cat 4) cyclone/hurricane/typhoon. with winds over 180 km/hr.
No one uses asphalt or wood shingles in Australia. In hot weather the asphalt melts. Bush fires are also a problem. In many council ares these are banned. Beside steel sheet roofing in Australia pressed concrete (or more correctly mortar as containing sand, cement and flyash) tiles are the next most common. I thought that the Australian companies James Hardie and BORAL had captured about 10% of the roofing USA market their concrete tiles which are about 1/3 of the price of terracotta tiles.

Reply to  cementafriend
November 20, 2016 7:33 am

I see the metal roofing in areas with high snow load. The metal sheds snow well and warms in the daytime. We hope to change to a metal roof in the future due to shingle loss in wind.

Reply to  cementafriend
November 20, 2016 10:46 am

Yes, metal roofs are pretty standard in the mountains where you can have feet of snow on the roof for months at a time as well as 100+ mph winds. A big advantage is that they are much more resistant to forming to ice dams which can quickly destroy a 3-tab shingle roof.

Reply to  cementafriend
November 21, 2016 12:27 am

I see that Boral has just bought Headwaters Inc which is the largest supplier and user of flyash in USA. CEO Kane of Boral must like the election of Trump and likely more coal fired power stations. Also, expect to see more steel roofing, concrete roof tiles, and concrete blocks.

2hotel9
Reply to  cementafriend
November 21, 2016 4:34 am

Here in western PA I know several cement and block manufacturers who have shutdown since 2012. Also know many people working in coal industry who are out of a job. Got a feeling this situation is going to change, rapidly.

Eki
November 19, 2016 3:01 pm

Such rants could be seen as politically motivated, not something you see here often. You should have used more clever language.

Reply to  Eki
November 20, 2016 1:54 am

I have to agree. I usually enjoy Willis’ posts, but not this one. Here in the UK, you wouldn’t be able to find an asphalt roof on a home! I remember the first time I heard that US homes have such flimsy roofs, and I thought, ‘What?’. All roofs here are slate or tile. They are very strong and last 100 years, and much more. So you might think that Musk’s roof would be uneconomic. Well, yes and no. There’s no point in re-roofing, but if it’s a new home, then surely solar-powered is the way. We DO have to find energy security – especially here, in Europe, and we do have to go down the solar route at some point. Where I diverge from current advocates is that I state that time hasn’t arrived yet. When solar panels can generate a really good energy return, then we should all go that way. At the moment, despite promises, they are abysmal. Huge outlay, small return, long payback time (that is actually almost infinite, despite what solar companies and green groups state). When solar panels can exist without subsidy, then they have truly arrived. Willis’ post hits some true spots (like subsidy) but rants on about fireman and insurance, which is a minor consideration.
Should have considered the writing more, Willis, before submitting to publish. You are above this.

Gerry, England
Reply to  bazzer1959
November 20, 2016 4:13 am

Don’t discount the use of building regulations to force you to change your whole roof if a part needs replacing. Currently if need to replace 15% or more you have to do the whole lot in ‘green’ approved roofing. While it might save you on energy bills eventually it might be that you can’t afford to do the rest.

taz1999
Reply to  bazzer1959
November 20, 2016 11:43 am

I call BS on this design until you fix the most basic issues. How do you fasten them to the roof. Pretty sure you can’t nail them. They have to overlap in some fashion. And roofs have curves; pretty sure you won’t be cutting pieces. There’s an electrical connection for each “shingle”. The info may be dated buy saw in some cases asphalt shingles were better than tile in some wind conditions because the asphalt tore apart piece meal as opposed to lifting whole tiles off.

taz1999
Reply to  bazzer1959
November 20, 2016 11:49 am

“but saw” not “buy saw”. Now imagine your roof catching fire after the hurricane has passed over and your shingles start generating electricity again. The Tesla cars seem to have some affinity to catching fire as it is.

MarkW
Reply to  bazzer1959
November 21, 2016 8:06 am

Why do you believe that you will have to go down the solar route somehow?
I can’t think of any rational reason for wanting solar, especially in most of Europe. Spain and Southern Italy are at least in the realm of possibility. North of that, forget about it.

Reply to  MarkW
November 21, 2016 12:01 pm

Britain, and Europe, (to comply with the CO2 targets) can only reduce emissions by switching to non-fossil fuels. We have a fair bit of wind here, but solar is actually more reliable. What we’re waiting for is much more efficient solar cells, as the current ones can’t cut it. Geothermal is too expensive, wind is unreliable, wave and tidal can’t provide anywhere near enough, and nuclear is seen by the public as dangerous…that leaves solar. The question is, why did you need me to explain it? I believe solar is the future, as it’s relatively simple technology, and available to anyone (coast of inland). Every home in the UK could be powered by solar…if those homes were ‘passive’ homes. But if we see the efficiency of panels increase dramatically, then we need not even resort to homes with such poor air change ratios. So as I said, solar is the way to go. We’re not going to be able to meet the CO2 emission levels set down in law by any other means.

MarkW
Reply to  bazzer1959
November 21, 2016 12:44 pm

So you have to do it to comply with your idiot politicians.
Simple solutions, get some sane politicians and give up on those meaningless CO regulations.

Reply to  MarkW
November 22, 2016 3:46 pm

I couldn’t agree more! The UK government has made legally binding CO2 emission levels for the future. We have to comply, and reduce our emissions by 80% by 2050. Solar and nuclear is the only way that’s going to happen. Since nuclear means huge per-kWh costs (because we are to allow China and France to build us nuclear stations, and PRE-set the per-hour cost!), then solar really is the ONLY choice! Each home will have to be solar powered.
You see, you may now get a sense of why Brexit happened. It wasn’t just about the EU, or immigration, it was about how our political leaders have led us down paths over the years. Our current borrowing requirement is eye-watering, and is not talked about by the media very much. It now cannot be inflated away because inflation is low. So we have to export more. To do that, the Pound has to stay low (a great benefit from the Brexit vote, but ignorant people at the BBC etc. think a low pound is a bad thing!). We also need good trading agreements (Brexit, again). If we don’t wrestle our current deficit then we are in big trouble – though we are in plentiful company.

Kaiser Derden
Reply to  Eki
November 20, 2016 7:06 am

no, its only because YOU see everything thru the prism of politics that you think its politically motivated. Thru the prism of efficiency and rent seeking con men its clear that politics has nothing to do with this criticism of Musk. You liberals are always SO transparent.

george e. smith
November 19, 2016 3:05 pm

“””””….. The solution is simple, and might even start soon. It is to
STOP SUBSIDIZING INEFFICIENT TECHNOLOGIES THAT ARE NOT READY FOR MARKET!!
……”””””
Correction: The solution is simple, and might even start soon. It is to
STOP SUBSIDIZING INEFFICIENT TECHNOLOGIES THAT ARE READY FOR MARKET!!
If they are ready for market, they have no need for subsidies.
The solution is simple, and might even start soon. It is to
STOP SUBSIDIZING INEFFICIENT TECHNOLOGIES .
With solar energy, nothing matters but efficiency; all other things being equal. The sun isn’t going to supply any more, any time soon.
The solution is simple, and might even start soon. It is to
STOP SUBSIDIZING.
G

Reply to  george e. smith
November 19, 2016 7:08 pm

Dead right. But it needs to be combined with a truly free market. That means one that uses price as a signal for real cost. Normally sellers will price their product based on costs and demand. Usually fine. But when big companies ‘dump’ stock at losing prices to drive a competitor out of business, or as a loss leader, they distort the free market. So a free market HAS RULES, strict ones. And one of them, as you rightly say, is no subsidies.

MarkW
Reply to  Ron House
November 21, 2016 8:10 am

The problem with this notion of predatory pricing, is that it exists only in the mind of people who have no idea how economics works.
First off, there’s economies of scale. If a company is selling 10 times more than it’s competitors, it has to lose 10 times as much in order to make such a strategy work, and that’s only assuming it’s competitors do nothing.
The easiest thing for the competitor to do is to stop selling until the so called predator stops selling at a loss. This way the predator is losing lots of money, and the competitor isn’t losing anything.
Even if the competitor does somehow go out of business, it’s assets don’t evaporate, they are available for anyone to buy at fire sale prices. And it’s a great opportunity since the major player in the market has just exhausted all of it’s resources.

schitzree
Reply to  george e. smith
November 19, 2016 10:12 pm

Just STOP. ^¿^

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  george e. smith
November 19, 2016 10:27 pm

george.e.smith writes

STOP SUBSIDIZING.

Are you in the US? At the moment…
The cost of petrol in the US is about US$2.30 per US gallon
The cost of petrol in Australia is about US$6.40 per US gallon
The US petrol prices are way too low by world standards. Perhaps if you were expected to pay the price everyone else paid, you might feel differently about “subsidies”

gnomish
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 10:52 pm

you have way too much to eat by world standards, way too much health, way too much education, too.
so thanks, procrustes, but i could do with less of your inverted values.

benofhouston
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 11:11 pm

The majority of that price is taxes. The world gas market is actually fairly flat. The problem comes that some countries tax the heck out of fuel, and others subsidize it. America taxes a bit. Australia and Europe tax the heck out of it.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 11:48 pm

benofhouston writes

The majority of that price is taxes.

Nope. Australians pay about US$2.03 in tax on that US gallon. Taking all that tax out still leaves our price US$4.37 which is still a bit under twice the price US people pay.

mobihci
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 12:49 am

Australia pay based on the singapore market and pay excise tax + gst on the base and that tax. but we are not as bad as some-
http://www.aip.com.au/pricing/facts/Facts_about_Petrol_Prices_and_the_Australian_Fuel_Market.htm
[img]http://www.aip.com.au/pricing/images/oecd_ulp.png[/img]

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 1:28 am

I’m not sure that graph is accurate mobihci?
https://www.ato.gov.au/business/excise-and-excise-equivalent-goods/fuel-excise/excise-rates-for-fuel/
…is the official excise for Australian petrol and its AU$0.396 per litre
Currently petrol is about AU$1.25 per litre or so where I am.
But your graph has the amount of tax well over 1/3, it looks to be very nearly 1/2.
http://www.aip.com.au/pricing/facts/Facts_about_Petrol_Prices_and_the_Australian_Fuel_Market.htm

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 2:04 am

Willis writes

So at the end, we are subsidizing 31 gallons of fuel the stunning amount of six measly cents … meaning that in the US, gasoline is subsidized at about two-tenths of a penny per gallon.

No, your government is “subsidising” you personally with your fuel consumption by around 33c per litre when compared to me. By comparison every other country taxes fuel much higher than the US. So whilst you may not agree with “low tax” being a subsidy in your case, you seem to have a big problem with it when it comes to Musk.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 2:38 am

Willis writes

Where did that number come from?

From the post below this one
http://theconversation.com/factcheck-do-australians-pay-high-petrol-taxes-29264
I pay 47c/litre tax and you pay 14c/litre tax. You pay very low tax and its your government that “subsidises” you in this. It could, instead, do what every other country in the world does and taxes it taxes fuel much higher. In turn it would have much more tax available to spend on your retirement.

Sunderlandsteve
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 2:47 am

petrol is not cheaper in the USA because of subsidies, its expensive elsewhere because of taxation!

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 3:19 am

Sunderlandsteve writes

petrol is not cheaper in the USA because of subsidies

Well actually the pre-tax price of petrol is cheaper than every other country too. That’s the oil companies subsidising the US directly.
The point I’ve been making is that when Musk initially pays no tax to build his companies its an unacceptable subsidy to some but when the US government has low taxes on fuel by comparison to everyone else then apparently that’s an ok situation.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 3:25 am

Willis writes

Here is the essential difference—a subsidy goes into the pocket of the producer.

Musk has pocketed no money from the US taxpayers, instead he is not paying money as tax (yet). Its a big difference Willis. If Musk didn’t build his factories at all, the net tax result would be exactly the same.
This way you now have new industry in the US and that’s employing people. Try telling those people that the US would be better off without Musk’s initiatives.

2hotel9
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 5:22 am

So, instead of lowering your price you want to raise other people’s price. How very socialist of you, drag everyone DOWN to your level. Your petrol price is high because the socialist scumbags in your government want you to use less. Since intelligent, independent citizens refuse to do that your scumbag socialist government drones force you to by jacking up the prices. See how that works?

mobihci
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 6:41 am

tim, that graph is correct. if you look at where it changes to tax, you can see it is around 65c. add excise of 38or 39c, you end up at $1.04 wholesale price, add wholesale markup, retail markup, then 10% GST and you end up at $1.20+.
a reduction in excise could never be considered a subsidy to oil companies, the money never ends up back to them at all. at a stretch, the reduction of excise could be considered a subsidy to road users, that is if the excise actually wasnt enough to cover road repair/construction, however the excise, which was introduced as a road usage tax originally, is now way over the need for roads, it is general revenue for the federal government. that is, it is overtaxing road users.

Kaiser Derden
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 7:09 am

your price is based on the your location and local taxes … we do pay the same costs as you … we pay for the cost of extraction and transportation … no crying about our costs being lower than yours …

Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 7:42 am

So who subsidizes the fuel costs in America or why is the cost of petrol in Australia so unearthly high? I suspect in Australia the government adds to the cost of the fuel in an effort to keep costs high (please correct me if I’m wrong). Also, in the US, federal taxes on fuel are 18.4 cents, average state tax is 26.60 cents (eia figures). So 45 cents of the $2.30 is actually tax, not the cost of the fuel itself. I’m not seeing any subsidy here.

yarpos
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 12:45 pm

Why are fuel and other taxes higher in Oz? Because only 25million Australians live in a country the size of the US 48, but they expect first world infrastructure like roads, rail, power , water, hospitals that all work. They also fund a small but capable military and decent social support for those in need. Nothing much to do with scumbag socialism but more to do with high expectations , small population and a big country.

Dan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 1:52 pm

The whole debate concerning gas prices in the US versus Australia overlooks a couple of simple issues:
1) cost of transportation. Australia is farther away from production areas. Therefore, it is more expensive to deliver.
2) the US consumes much more fuel. Economies of scale dictates the US will benefit from cheaper fuel.
3) the US is the largest market for oil and gas in the world, giving it the ability to demand a lower cost.
4) the US is now the world’s largest producer of natural gas and is moving towards fossil fuel independence. Competition breeds lower costs. Australia is no where near being a major petrol producer.
5) Internal distribution. The US has a robust infrastructure of pipelines and transportation hubs, allowing for competitive fuel prices, even in rural and remote areas. Given Australia’s huge landmass and very small population density of 3 people per sq kilometer versus the US’ 35 people per sq kilometer. Add to this, that Australia largest city accounts for about a quarter of its population, and the internal distribution problem is even worse.
6) now you can add taxes to the mix, with Australia having to support more infrastructure with fewer citizens.
7) Conclusion: given the economic realities, it sucks being Australian. Given the natural beauty, its fabulous being an Australian. So lets not talk about the differences of Australian and US cost in strickly simplistic terms. Given the economic and logistical realities, I would fully expect that Australian fuel is about 3-4 times more expensive than US costs.

Cube
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 3:12 pm

TTM
You’re not paying fuel prices, you’re paying taxes. What “standards are you referring to, and whomset them? Stupid post bud.
Love, Cube

davideisenstadt
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 21, 2016 2:14 am

Tim:
With all due respect, the failure to impose a tax is, in no way, a subsidy.
In this case, you just pay a higher rate of tax an Gasoline.
Language should be used precisely.
your failure to do so is troubling, since you appear to understand just what youre doing, which is called equivocating.
Keep your definitions clear, and constant.

Charles
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 21, 2016 2:16 am

The figures are incorrect. Gasoline in Australia is currently about $A1.30 per litre (often lower). There are 3.7 litres to the US gallon so the price is $A4.80 per gallon. At current exchange rates that is $US 3.60 per US gallon not $6.40.

Paul Callander
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 21, 2016 6:05 am

No! The price of petrol is too high in most places outside the US because it is taxed so highly – negative subsidies. The “world standard” is to tax petroleum products to make them less attractive – and by the way raise a hell of a lot of money for government.

MarkW
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 21, 2016 8:12 am

Let me get this straight, unless our government taxes us as heavily as your government taxes you, we are being subsidized?

MarkW
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 21, 2016 8:14 am

Tim, is it actually your contention that oil companies are deliberately charging US consumers less than they could?????
Are you delusional?

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  george e. smith
November 20, 2016 1:41 am

Ah..must be Australia’s GST on top of that… So we have AU paying 91c/litre + 47c tax and the US paying 76c/litre and further being “subsidised” in the sense the government only taxes at 14c/litre – not much at all compared to every other country.
http://theconversation.com/factcheck-do-australians-pay-high-petrol-taxes-29264
Not so different from Musk not being taxed (yet) really…

gnomish
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 3:04 am

tim- australian statists could be taking 100$ a gallon tax – so you’re subsidized to the tune of 99$ per litre!
hell, they could take 1000 – so you’re just rolling in riches!
being so wealthy, then, you are a thief because if you didn’t take that 999$ subsidy the babies would eat – but no- you killed them by taking the food from their mouths.
(i’m getting the hang of channeling proudhon thanks to your splendid example! yay!)

gnomish
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 3:18 am

today i can buy an imperial gallon of regular gasoline for $2.11.
1 litre = 0.219969 imperial gallons.
so that’s 0.46 us cents for a liter of gas.
your ‘conversation’ website is really well known for lefty lib misinformation- gullible you, eh?
the price is not 90 cents per liter ($4.09 per gallon) anywhere in the usa. it hasn’t ever been that high.
try this:
http://oilprice.com/Energy/Oil-Prices/Top-10-Countries-With-The-Cheapest-And-Most-Expensive-Gas.html

Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 9:27 am

Tim if your government is taxing gas too high, then lobby them to lower, taxes. Don’t blame us for what your government does.

bit chilly
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 4:37 pm

tim, who is complaining about the levels musk is being taxed at ? that is for governments to decide. i think the complaints are mainly around the amout of taxpayer money that is directly handed to his company.

Udar
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 5:47 pm

Paying less taxes than other countries pay is not subsidizing, because we do not have world government and we do not have “standard” taxes on gas. Each country sets it’s own tax rates – ours is less than others, but that is not subsidy. You whole argument is really bizarre.

Mike the Morlock
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 6:35 pm

TimTheToolMan November 20, 2016 at 1:41 am
gnomish November 20, 2016 at 3:04 am
Hi guys something else may be in play
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-05-19/plans-for-oil-refinery-in-gladstone/6480980?pfmredir=sm
So Tim is/did the refinery get built? Here in the US we do our own refining. How much extra cost is incurred because you are buying 60% of your fuel is refined abroad?
michael
also did anything ever come of these finds? Or were they strangled to death by the green Blob. perhaps if you push for their development your fuel costs would go down Your countries crude oil production is in a decline. Just saying
http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/australian-shale-oil-discovery-could-be-larger-than-canada-s-oilsands-1.1320034
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/australiaandthepacific/australia/9822955/Trillions-of-dollars-worth-of-oil-found-in-Australian-outback.html

Steve T
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 21, 2016 6:42 am

TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 at 1:41 am
Ah..must be Australia’s GST on top of that… So we have AU paying 91c/litre + 47c tax and the US paying 76c/litre and further being “subsidised” in the sense the government only taxes at 14c/litre – not much at all compared to every other country.
http://theconversation.com/factcheck-do-australians-pay-high-petrol-taxes-29264
Not so different from Musk not being taxed (yet) really…

…and all the original and subsequent comments re subsidy/taxes.
As most have commented, subsidies and taxes are not the same thing. There are many, many reasons for price differences (distance,distribution,refining costs,national policy on road tax,currency fluctuations,VAT rates,sales tax etc. etc). Don’t forget oil is sold in dollars at a market rate.
If your area is more expensive, it is the price that your area is willing to pay, no more, no less.
However, one other thing is most people have a VOTE. I suspect that Americans have more easy access to their representatives and they are more likely to complain and be listened to. No point in moaning because of jealousy.
It is like me complaining that “proper” English tea must be subsidised in England because it is a quarter of the price it is here in south-west France.
SteveT

BlueDevil
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 22, 2016 2:05 am

You have no idea what you are talking about. You are causing climate change all by yourself. A subsidy has a dead weight welfare loss. No matter what circumstance, it reduces the overall economy. Lack of a tax is not a subsidy. And, just because you pay more in tax, it does not mean the US benefits other than in the very short term upon implementation of a new higher tax regimen. After that preferences, for both consumers and suppliers, could shift dependent upon elasticity of supply and demand of each respective curve in isolation and in combination.

lemiere jacques
Reply to  george e. smith
November 20, 2016 8:02 am

indeed!!!!

Mike Smith
Reply to  george e. smith
November 20, 2016 11:44 am

Yes! Subsidies attract crooks and corruption like flies around a cow pat.
And if we got rid of all these darn corporate welfare subsidies, we’d all be paying a lot less taxes.
Subsidies are always a bad thing. No exceptions!

bit chilly
Reply to  Mike Smith
November 20, 2016 4:38 pm

spot on mike . that is the problem in a nutshell.

Bloke down the pub
November 19, 2016 3:08 pm

I have solar panels on my roof and my insurer doesn’t charge any more for the privilege.

Chad Irby
Reply to  Bloke down the pub
November 19, 2016 3:15 pm

Check the fine print. Either they don’t know you have a solar roof, or they put in a little caveat that they won’t pay for certain things that increase risk. A lot of policies also have a “we don’t cover structural changes you didn’t specifically tell us about” clause.
A lot of fire departments are going with “let it burn to the ground” instead of trying to put out fires in houses with extensive solar panel setups.

Greg
Reply to  Chad Irby
November 19, 2016 4:42 pm

Adding solar panels is not considered a ‘structural change’.
Code requires a three foot access around solar panels so firemen have access to the roof.
Generally only a limited amount of roof gets solar panels so there are plenty of other areas to ventilate a roof if needed. Although if your roof needs to be ventilated, there isn’t likely to be much left of your house anyway. 😉
Solar is very common so firemen are trained how to handle it. Code requires a disconnect, plus firemen have the tools to severe conduits and cables if necessary. And it is pretty easy to break loose a panel if you need to get under it.

Bloke down the pub
Reply to  Chad Irby
November 20, 2016 11:02 am

They do know I have solar panels, because I told them, yet there was no surcharge. To receive the feed in tariff the property needs to meet certain criteria, including being correctly wired. This means that when the mains supply is interrupted the solar panels are switched off. As a fire will almost certainly trip out the earth leakage circuit breaker, there is not likely to be any additional risk to fire fighters.

reno
Reply to  Bloke down the pub
November 19, 2016 3:20 pm

Well then be sure not too tell them

Leigh
Reply to  Bloke down the pub
November 19, 2016 3:25 pm

You’ve just raised a worrying point with me.
So do I but I don’t believe I notified my insurer when I had the system installed*. (purely a financial decision) In the event of a fire caused by it I wonder where my insurance entitlement stands. I’ll be giving them a call first thing Monday.

bruce
Reply to  Leigh
November 19, 2016 3:37 pm

Its more for the fireman’s safety. Unless they have a shut off available to them they are reluctant to get shocked. Thus let it burn.

davideisenstadt
Reply to  Bloke down the pub
November 19, 2016 6:36 pm

A meat packing plant in New Jersey burned to the ground…it had panels on its flat roof, firefighters couldnt access the fire quickly, the building and the hundreds of thousands of pounds of meat inside were a total loss.
Link:
http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/2-Alarm-Fire-Rips-Through-Dietz–Watson-Building-222001371.html
Money quotes?
here:
“The fire broke out at the Dietz & Watson cold storage facility on Cooperstown Road in Delanco, Burlington County, N.J. around 1:30 p.m. Sunday and caused the roof, lined with thousands of solar panels, to collapse within hours. Thick, black smoke could be seen billowing from the facility miles away.”
Regarding the risk of electrocution faced by firefighters?
“SOLAR PANELS POSE HAZARD
Firefighters had to pull back at some points because the fully-charged solar panels posed the risk of electrocution.
“With all that power and energy up there, I can’t jeopardize a guy’s life for that,” said Holt.
Officials say the fire was focused between the trusses and solar panels on the roof. There have been two explosions so far and at least one wall collapsed.”
How can any sane person criticize photovoltaic roof installations?
Easily, I suppose.

Reply to  davideisenstadt
November 19, 2016 9:33 pm

So the solar panels were “fully-charged”….
…to whom? To the taxpayers, in large part, would be my guess.
That is, indeed, frightening. But I wouldn’t worry too much about electrocution, from rooftop solar panels.
Have you ever looked at a solar power plant (“solar farm”) like this…
http://www.crjdevelopment.nl/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/solarthegrounds.jpg
…and noticed what is not there?
There are never any of these:comment image
That’s because the solar panels produce so little power than you don’t need big transformer substations for them, like the real power plants would have.

yarpos
Reply to  davideisenstadt
November 20, 2016 2:56 am

Tell you what Dave , you can come to my place and but your fingers across the output of my solar panels if you like. Happy to stand back and see how you go. Each one has a micro invertor, producing AC from the panel all daisy chained together. One a good day they easily do 2400W at 240V, eaisly enough to be fatal.
Significant DC current sources are also something I wouldnt want to be encountering in a chaotic environment either. The fire fighters are quite right to stand back.

MarkW
Reply to  davideisenstadt
November 21, 2016 8:24 am

At a previous company I worked on equipment that monitored solar panels. They were designed to be powered directly from the panels. I had to build a test set up for these little puppies. I had to specially order the 5000 VDC power supply, because most retailers didn’t carry them.

Bill J
November 19, 2016 3:09 pm

Sorry this piece comes across as simple hatred of Elon Musk. I have no idea whether his claims about these new tiles are accurate – and they do seem far-fetched – but this is simply ad hominid attacks.

charles nelson
Reply to  Bill J
November 19, 2016 3:14 pm

Ad hominid! Love it.

Bill J
Reply to  charles nelson
November 19, 2016 4:28 pm

Yep good old auto correct

Reply to  charles nelson
November 19, 2016 4:37 pm

I would like to hear his definition of the word “hatred” and how it applies to this post.

PiperPaul
Reply to  charles nelson
November 19, 2016 5:59 pm

Criticism = Hatred now, goldminor, due to microaggressions and special snowflakes who melt and self-destruct at the slightest hint of non-thundering approval. We have gone from Nanny State to Ninny State.

Bill J
Reply to  charles nelson
November 20, 2016 1:51 pm

Just look at the way Willis describes Musk: a liar, deceptive, screwing over Americans, only out to enrich himself, etc.
” When Musk’s lips are moving he either counting how much money he has screwed out of the American public, or he’s lying about his upcoming products ”
” the man who has made billions with a “b” by sponging off of your taxpayer dollars, the man you can always find face-down at the government trough”
“I wouldn’t be surprised to find him cozening the public out of yet more money before he runs out of suckers. Nobody ever lost money underestimating the intelligence of the American greenoisie, and Musk has made a science out of playing to their worst fears.”
Sounds like a liberal attack on a skeptic.
Willis please just stick with the facts and stop with the personal attacks.

Reply to  Bill J
November 20, 2016 2:11 pm

Bill J, I think you misunderstand the nature of an “ad honinem” argument. X is a bad person, therefore X is wrong. Stating why one concludes Elon Musk is the various bad characteristics Willis was referring to him as is not, merely why Mr Eschenbach does not approve of Musk’ business practices.

Reply to  Bill J
November 19, 2016 3:30 pm

Ad hominid and Ad hominem
I agree — a little math and professionalism would go a long way. He does seem to be comparing his roof costs to the high end products, but I don’t think I could replace an asphalt roof for $5,500. (I will find out because I need to replace mine in the next few years.) Maybe that is just the cost of the materials, but it still needs to be installed.
The snarky tone does not really lend it self to credibility.

bill johnston
Reply to  lorcanbonda
November 19, 2016 6:08 pm

Probably closer to $8000. And check with your insurance company about “approved” brands
and specs. Not all shingles are approved.

Reply to  lorcanbonda
November 19, 2016 6:29 pm

In case you were wondering
Amish roofing cost model. Cost of materials x 3 = installed roof price. 1/3 for materials, 1/3 to remove old stuff, 1/3 to install. Assume typical 25 square roof @ $50./sq = $1250. Total price is $1250×3= $3750 (30 year shingles) (note 1 sq = 10×10). If you live on the coasts add 25-50% for regulations (deposal fees, licenses, extra insurance, etc)

davideisenstadt
Reply to  lorcanbonda
November 19, 2016 6:40 pm

Willis didnt engage in an ad hominem argument.
Musk is a liar and a cheat because he is.
His solution is bunkum because it is.
An Ad Hom argument goes like this:
Anyone who is a bad person cannot be right.
X is a bad person
Therefore X isnt right.
Musk is wrong because he’s wrong, not because he’s a liar and a cheat.
His roofs will cost more than he claims, and they will present a real risk to fire fighters.
If he wasnt a rentier, and a parasite, one might be tempted to give him the benefit of the doubt.
He happens to be a liar and a cheat, but he is wrong for other reasons.
really.

schitzree
Reply to  lorcanbonda
November 19, 2016 10:25 pm

We replaced my sisters roof for around $5,000, and that was with stone coated steel. But we also did the work ourselves. Materials and the rental of a cherry picker to get everything up there.
As for Musk, I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt… just as soon as I see a Tesla Roadster do a battery swap. >¿<

Leo Smith
Reply to  lorcanbonda
November 19, 2016 11:39 pm

I often am at odds with Willis, but in this case I leap to his defence. Ad hominem attacks are attacks made on the person, because you dont like his message.
This is an attack on Elon Musk, because you don’t like Elon Musk!
I can relate to that…

yarpos
Reply to  Bill J
November 19, 2016 3:32 pm

I missed the bit where he attacked Hominids. There where some significant points made but the name calling really isnt necessary, we dont want to sink to the level of the alarmists.

Tony Morrison
Reply to  Bill J
November 19, 2016 3:39 pm

I had one of those ad hominid attacks once. Didn’t half hurt. Those Homo Habilis guys really pack a punch.

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  Bill J
November 19, 2016 5:41 pm

Musk makes it pretty easy.

davideisenstadt
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
November 19, 2016 6:41 pm

shomer shabos dude!
shomer shabbos!

drednicolson
Reply to  Bill J
November 19, 2016 5:41 pm

Actions and claims are fair game for criticism, no matter the tone the critic takes or what personal beef the critic may have. You don’t get to validly claim ad hominem when the critic is judging the action, not the person.
Also, nothing broadcasts pretensiousness more clearly than a fake Sorry.

MarkW
Reply to  drednicolson
November 21, 2016 8:30 am

As someone put it above, ad hominem is where you declare that the person is wrong because he’s a bad person.
Willis’s argument is more like, Musk is wrong, and that makes him a bad person.
PS: Willis does an adequate job of demonstrating how and why Musk is wrong.

Kaiser Derden
Reply to  Bill J
November 20, 2016 7:13 am

simple hatred of Elon Musk says the Musk fan boy … and no they are not personal attacks unless you consider calling a con man a con man a personal attack …

Reply to  Bill J
November 20, 2016 8:00 am

While there are criticisms of Musk as a person, the article covers several reasons why Musk’s latest idea is far afield from reality. So you are ignoring all the reasons and just going with picking on Musk?

MarkW
Reply to  Bill J
November 21, 2016 8:27 am

Let me get this straight. Pointing out where Musk is lying is an ad hominem?

November 19, 2016 3:09 pm

Brilliant.
Thanks.
This guy is in the subsidy business.
He knows how to milk the govt.

Leigh
Reply to  chaamjamal
November 19, 2016 3:30 pm

So do all the others that have their collective snouts firmly ensconced in the trough of public monies.
Windmills spring to mind. Remove the government subsidys and it all collapses.

schitzree
Reply to  Leigh
November 19, 2016 10:47 pm

Remove the government subsidys and it all collapses.

Sometimes they don’t even wait THAT long. ○¿●
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hornslet_wind-turbine_collapse
3 more mentioned, each one a ‘first evar’.
https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2016/08/24/wind-turbine-collapses-in-cape-breton-sparking-investigation.html

yarpos
Reply to  chaamjamal
November 19, 2016 3:34 pm

Most renewables are really about subsidy farming, but alarmist will just say the ends justifies the means

george e. smith
Reply to  chaamjamal
November 19, 2016 3:40 pm

Well it’s actually the taxpayers that he’s milking; his fellow Americans. All socialists milk their fellow citizens.
g

Harry S
November 19, 2016 3:11 pm

I’m also interested to know the answer to several other important issues:
1. Glass is usually slippery. How are these tiles installed if they are slippery to walk on?
2. How do professionals determine defective tiles inexpensively? Thermal imaging cameras aren’t cheap.
3. Who distributes the product? Assuming a range of colors, are roofing suppliers the intended distributors or are electrical suppliers the intended market? Either way, electricians are not roofers and roofers are not electricians.
4. What product is intended to be on northern roof faces? Does the homeowner revert to a different tile or waste money on a PV product that doesn’t work?
Personal opinion: More hype from a struggling company.

MarkW
Reply to  Harry S
November 21, 2016 8:34 am

Thermal won’t be able to detect a defective shingle. The only way to do that will be to measure it’s voltage/current output directly.
There are two ways to do that. Have someone with a meter check each one, either from above or from below. Depending on where the manufacturer puts the test ports.
The second way is to have a built in sensor that monitors the shingle and reports when it is going bad.
Both are expensive. The first is cheaper to install but increases maintenance costs.
The second is more expensive to install but decreases maintenance costs.

November 19, 2016 3:12 pm

Between hail damage and the risk to firemen, not ready for prime time. Furthermore, roofs are not a regular size of equal units, so cutting the “shingles” to size seems impractical.

Chimp
November 19, 2016 3:13 pm

Musk is indeed a master of milking the public cash cow. Or bilking the taxpayer.
He used CA tax credits to lease the defunct warehouse of defunct mega millions BK Obama-backed Green scam Solyndra last year. Now he is merging Tesla with his own SolarCity pork project.
But investors keep giving him more money to play with to enrich himself.
That said, Tesla cars are fun to drive, with surprisingly peppy performance, and look good.

george e. smith
November 19, 2016 3:14 pm

My roof is available for rental to any solar energy company. They can pay me for my solar energy on the basis of one KW per square meter times a latitude factor. They can keep the electricity they generate for themselves, I don’t need or want it. They of course need to transport it off my roof. If that is by selling it to the electric company, I’ll allow them the space to put their meter to PG&E which must be independent of mine. They of course need full replacement insurance for any damage that might result from their use of my roof.
Solar city won’t tell you what their panel efficiency is; solar in to on grid AC. I don’t care what their efficiency is, I charge for the raw EM solar incoming energy
They get the subsidy for the panel on your roof, whether or not you get any net electricity.
g

David Middleton
November 19, 2016 3:15 pm

In Canada, we quite often have snow covering our roofs all winter. How are these roofs supposed to work when under a foot of snow. Oh yeah, build a heater to melt the snow.

schitzree
Reply to  David Middleton
November 19, 2016 11:15 pm

Silly David, Canada sees daylight during the winter for, what, 6 hours a day on average? And the sun peeks around 15° above the horizon? It wasn’t like those Solar Panels were going to be doing much even without a foot (30 cm?) Of snow on them.
~¿~

Leo Smith
Reply to  schitzree
November 19, 2016 11:45 pm

Indeed.
The UK has an installed base of something like 10GW of solar panels.
I have just added as section to the ‘gridwatch*’ website to collect [estimated] solar output.
The average for November to date is under 600MW. short days, low azimuth…
I still calculated that that is costing the taxpayer £20m a week give or take. That’s just for the solar…don’t get me started on wind.
And I have some reason to believe that that is an over estimate, too.
*http://www.gridwatch.templar.co.uk

Reply to  David Middleton
November 20, 2016 1:38 pm

David – well you could buy solar panels with built in heaters:
http://www.solarpowerworldonline.com/2014/02/snow/
NOTE: if you “brush” the snow off your solar panels, you may void the warranty. LOL.comment image?dl=0
NOTE – I am not against solar. I own a dozen or so for low power uses.

Kasuha
November 19, 2016 3:16 pm

A decent review in my opinion, first 4 minutes go through Musk’s presentation, then it looks at how viable it may be.

arthur4563
November 19, 2016 3:53 pm

Actually, inverters (which change the direct current produced by solar panels into alternating current) cost about the same as solar panels, depending upon type, often cost more. Inverters are needed unless one is dedicating all of the output of the solar roof to a battery and then to an electric car. A typical solar roof has a nameplate capacity of 6Kwatts, although typically will only produce a max of around 4500 watts. The average day’s solar irradiance is around 5 “suns” , or the amount of sunlight one would get from 5 hours of maximum sunshine. 5 X 4.5 kwatts produces 22.5 kWhours. At 10 cents per kWhr, that’s worth about $2.20 per day. Musk 5 weeks ago claimed his car’s battery cost (including packaging, with a cooling system, etc) would run $190 per kWhour
this year. He also said that his gigafactory would cut battery costs by a third. GM claims $150 per kWhr for their cells (only) in theirelectric cars. Therefore one wonders why his wall mounted battery costs so much, although the inverter would account for much of the cost (i think it always comes with an inverter). His Tesla customers are getting a $7500 Fed subsidy so they can buy a $60,000 and up, (way up) `electric car, which is an energy hog, by the way. Solar shingles are NOT new – they have been around for quite some time. They have been difficult to install because of the need
for intershingle electrical connections. ANd firefighters sometimes refuse to get on a solar roof, since one can get electrocuted. Regardless, installation costs will be a rather large portion of the costs of solar shingle roofs. Regular solar panels have to have some air space between themselves and the roof, as they get quite hot. And when they heat up, they lose their ability to produce electricity. I have no idea about the characteristics of these shingles. I have no problem with people having solar roofs, but do have a problem with subsidizng the system, and which also has negative effects on the cost of power for others when the grid is forced to accept their unasked for excess power – by doing so, other power generators are forced to operate at lower capacities, which drives up the cost of their power. With Moltex and Transatomic both climinga levelized cost for their molten salt reactors at 2 cents per kWhour, solar roofs ,and all other power technologies,, are not competitive.

Leo Smith
Reply to  arthur4563
November 19, 2016 11:57 pm

With Moltex and Transatomic both claiming a levelized cost for their molten salt reactors at 2 cents per kWhour, solar roofs ,and all other power technologies, are not competitive.

Yeah, that’s what they claim….ain’t gonna happen even with the Trump in charge. There’s far too much regulatory burden on nuclear of any sort to get back to that level of costs.
That’s the sort of level we were getting out of reactors built in the 70s. Before Marxist inspired anti-nuclear really got a hold, and before 3MI, Chernobyl and Fukushima.
I engaged in an online conversation with someone about Fukushima., He claimed thousands had died from the radiation released by the reactor., I asked for evidence, and he posted a link to an article about how thousands of people had died from the tsunami . And how Fukushima was a disaster of the first order.
I engaged in a conversation online with someone who claimed hundreds of thousands of people had died from cancer because of Chernobyl. I aksed for evidence. “The governments lying to us and are covering it up” she said. “Are those the same governments that are paying people to install windmills and solar panels, and telling us that climate change is real and dangerous?” I asked.
There never was a reply…..

yarpos
Reply to  arthur4563
November 20, 2016 3:06 am

Where do you get your efficiency number from 4500W from 6000W nameplate. My system only looses 10%

Curious George
November 19, 2016 3:53 pm

The original purpose of the roof is to make sure that it does not rain in your home. Do these solar roofs prevent leaks? How frequently do you have to clean fallen leaves?

NW sage
Reply to  Curious George
November 19, 2016 5:34 pm

More than that – I have a concrete tile roof. It has lasted a LONG time but, like any other roof in the Pacific NW climate moss grows abundantly here. Every year or two I have to get up on the roof and walk all over it scraping all the new moss off. Moss growth surely is not favorable to solar electric generation. Not a word from Musk about moss!

Jer0me
November 19, 2016 4:07 pm

Here in Oz, most rooves are corrugated iron. Some have lasted over 150 years already. Beat that for cost and longevity, and I’ll listen to him.

William
Reply to  Jer0me
November 19, 2016 4:25 pm

Besides which, there is nothing quite as enjoyable as lying in bed and listening to the rain fall on a tin roof.
Of course, this doesn’t happen here in Oz anymore because Tim Flannery told us rain will be a distant memory, and we are all going to die, etc etc, etc…..

Jer0me
Reply to  William
November 19, 2016 5:15 pm

Even more enjoyable when you are not on the water main, and it means you don’t have to buy water this month 😉

MarkW
Reply to  William
November 21, 2016 8:39 am

rain yes, hail, not so much.

CraigAustin
November 19, 2016 4:16 pm

I am beginning to think Elon wasn’t joking when he said he smoked crack. His ideas might look better through a cracked lens.

John Hardy
November 19, 2016 4:27 pm

I object to this bigotted rant. The 4.9 billion is from a highly disputed LA times article from last year, discussed here: https://electrek.co/2016/04/20/elon-musk-bet-sun-ceo-scott-mcnealy-that-tesla-gov-subsidies/. Musk has many enemies especially the US auto industry. I think the guy is brilliant. He has invaded the space of BMW Merc, Cadillac etc and wiped the floor with them in his market sector. Not bad for a newbie

A C Osborn
Reply to  John Hardy
November 19, 2016 4:43 pm

And hasn’t made a profit on one car he has sold.
Brilliant.

Tobyw
Reply to  A C Osborn
November 30, 2016 3:25 am

Musk makes a significantly better gross margin on cars than the industry, he just spends the money on R&D and growth. TTM revenues are up 50 pct over 2015.
http://financials.morningstar.com/income-statement/is.html?t=TSLA&region=usa&culture=en-US
Having worked on high end cars for a living, I’m impressed by the Tesla and its manufacturing process a friend has one. As a niche car it is among the tops. Graphene batteries promise to be more energy dense, cheaper and far faster charging.
In principle I’m against government interference, but then the income tax is interference isn’t it? The Wright brothers managed to build an airplane with the profits of a seasonal, 3-man bicycle shop before the advent of the income tax.

Michael Jankowski
Reply to  John Hardy
November 19, 2016 4:56 pm

Enron wiped the floor for awhile and was loaded with “geniuses.”
Yes, Tesla has some awesome performance cars…but ranks near the bottom when it comes to reliability.
Musk’s glowing promises and predictions often don’t come to fruition, either.

Steve T
Reply to  Michael Jankowski
November 21, 2016 7:14 am

Michael Jankowski
November 19, 2016 at 4:56 pm
Enron wiped the floor for awhile and was loaded with “geniuses.”
Yes, Tesla has some awesome performance cars…but ranks near the bottom when it comes to reliability.
Musk’s glowing promises and predictions often don’t come to fruition, either.

Agree wholeheartedly, just a note to everyone who comments on the performance of electric cars. This is not new and is a “feature” of electric motor driven vehicles. When I was a nipper I can remember jumping on a bus and getting that incredible press into the seat as it set off – and don’t forget this was a fairly well loaded red double-decker trolleybus in London circa 1955 (hooked up to overhead wires).
SteveT

Reply to  John Hardy
November 19, 2016 5:25 pm

“wiped the floor with them in his market sector”

Has he indeed? How many cars is that, explicitly by manufacturer in real world car sectors? Not some variation of Tesla electric toy car sector.
Then subtract all of his subsidies.
For starters, Just Tesla has sold approximately 160,000 cars via a $7,500 tax rebate.
That is a subsidy to Tesla and totals $1.2 billion dollars alone. Before we get into Musk’s other subsidized activities.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  ATheoK
November 19, 2016 5:48 pm

http://www.ibtimes.com/tesla-motors-tsla-1q-2016-sales-14820-model-s-model-x-cars-were-delivered-first-three-2348000
“But on Thursday the company unveiled its $35,000 Model 3 mid-sized sedan to much fanfare and garnered more than 276,000 pre-orders as of Saturday evening. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has said deliveries to early customers will begin at the end of 2017.”
Pre-orders! That seems to be doing pretty well to me. For a fledgling car company, the growth would certainly be worrying the major car companies. Many of them are doing their own EVs now so they can see the future now even if they couldn’t before.
Also the 7.5k tax credit isn’t taking money from anyone, rather its a reduction in adding money to the tax coffers for who knows what purpose. If our governments were highly efficient with their tax money, I’d probably be more sympathetic. Its government’s job to set direction and EVs are a good direction IMO.
Adding that money into the tax system doesn’t stop the systemic problems the US has in helping its poor.

Reply to  ATheoK
November 19, 2016 6:08 pm

Sheer sophistry.
The tax rebate is direct compensation to the seller, that rightly is included in the seller’s earnings.
It is a government price reduction stolen from the pockets of citizens for the benefit of Musk, Tesla and the rich.

“The Palo Alto, Calif., company reported its first profit after 12 quarterly losses amid a push to generate cash for building its $35,000 Model 3. The company has pledged to lift annual production to 500,000 cars in 2018, from about 50,000 last year.
The quarter’s profit—a record and only the second time ever”

If Tesla manages to build 276,000 viable working cars beginning 2018.
Or seek alternative funding.

“The combined companies may ultimately need to raise $12.5 billion for spending through 2018, according to estimates by Oppenheimer.”

That is Tesla and Solarcity combined.
So far to date, Musk keeps raising money for Tesla by issuing new stock. Then spending it at remarkable rates.

“The company has pledged to lift annual production to 500,000 cars in 2018, from about 50,000 last year.”

A tenfold increase in car production? What’s he going to do? Build more Tesla plants? Hire GM and Ford plants?
Not forgetting a loose promise to provide cheaper better Tesla cars… Wait till the full bills are due!

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  ATheoK
November 19, 2016 6:23 pm

It is a government price reduction stolen from the pockets of citizens for the benefit of Musk, Tesla and the rich.
So not paying tax (by getting a legitimate tax credit) is stealing from citizens?
How does that work exactly?

Reply to  ATheoK
November 19, 2016 7:10 pm

People get a $7,500 bonus, as incentive for buying one manufacturer’s car.
$7,500 dollars out of the tax pool that other citizens make up, or it becomes debt for future citizens to pay of.
Tesla gets the money, then sells carbon credits to other car manufacturers, so those manufacturers can sell real cars to ordinary citizens. Cars that cost more because of the carbon credits paid to Tesla.
It is not, nor ever will be “free money”. That $7,500 and the additional carbon credits are additional burdens to citizens that are not that well off. Only the rich and Tesla benefit while the burdens are passed to lower incomes.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  ATheoK
November 19, 2016 7:21 pm

$7,500 dollars out of the tax pool that other citizens make up, or it becomes debt for future citizens to pay of.

Or it becomes money that the government doesn’t spend elsewhere. The Government is constantly juggling where it spends its money and its not debt unless the Government makes it debt by overspending.
The US government has been doing a lot of that…the EV tax subsidy shortcoming is a pittance compared to the debt the US government has racked up elsewhere.

Hivemind
Reply to  ATheoK
November 20, 2016 12:57 am

“… deliveries to early customers will begin at the end of 2017.”
Don’t you hate it when you go online to buy the latest series of your favourite TV show and find that you actually only pre-ordered it? I did it with NCIS New Orleans once and had to wait 12 months to receive the goods. Meanwhile the company had already billed my credit card. The effective interest involved is very high.
There is no way in the world I am going to order a car for over 12 months delivery. But, yes, I know there are a lot of true believers and virtue signalers that will. I don’t hold much hope for the human race.

Reply to  ATheoK
November 20, 2016 2:13 am

“TimTheToolMan November 19, 2016 at 7:21 pm
Or it becomes money that the government doesn’t spend elsewhere. The Government is constantly juggling where it spends its money and its not debt unless the Government makes it debt by overspending.
The US government has been doing a lot of that…the EV tax subsidy shortcoming is a pittance compared to the debt the US government has racked up elsewhere.

Which incompetence at handling money are you explaining?
The Federal Government borrows monthly. Debt is debt. Facetiously claiming it’s not debt till some unappointed time in the future is shoving one’s head somewhere.
So, others get to watch their deductions, e.g. medical deductions, get whittled into nothing while dilettante car purchasers can purchase some toy electric cars using big bonus payments; all while all those others trying to make ends meet face increased surcharges due to “carbon credits” that Tesla also owns?
And your justification is that the rebates and allowances per car purchaser, are pittances against the National budget?
Sounds like a Snowflake rationale…

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  ATheoK
November 20, 2016 2:48 am

ATheoK writes

And your justification is that the rebates and allowances per car purchaser, are pittances against the National budget?

Pittances against the US occupation in Iraq which costs about 720M per day. Still, according to Trump he’d rather take the oil than let Iran have it.
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-iraq-war-anniversary-idUSBRE92D0PG20130314
Total cost 2 Trillion dollars or so. Now that’s real money and that will impact on your retirement. That’s actual expenditure too, not just lack of income due to tax credits.

Reply to  ATheoK
November 20, 2016 5:50 pm

Obfuscations and straw man distractions Timmytmtm?
False trails to nowhere!?
Force ordinary citizens to subsidize rich people’s toys. While the Timmytmtm rants on about any silly piece of nonsense he thinks he remembers. Circular avoidance without ever admitting errors? Timmytmtm clogs his way through a dance of nonsense.
What a waste of gray matter.
Methinks he snarks like the connolwee troll.

MarkW
Reply to  ATheoK
November 21, 2016 8:41 am

Pre-orders are not sales. Let me know when he actually builds and ships them.

MarkW
Reply to  ATheoK
November 21, 2016 8:43 am

Hivemind: PS, if you should change your mind in the meantime, you can get your money back. It’s a refundable deposit.

MarkW
Reply to  ATheoK
November 21, 2016 8:44 am

Tim: Is that really the line you want to go with. That waste doesn’t matter so long as it’s less than some other government expense that you don’t approve of?

Cassandra
Reply to  John Hardy
November 19, 2016 5:50 pm

Agreed, it’s bordering on vitriol and pretty short on sources and analysis.
For a website dedicated to critical thought and usually balanced (though with a lean) articles, this is almost a rant.
Basically, instead of sticking solar panels on the roof, these shingles are now part of the roof; all that guff about inverters..? They’re already a mass produced product, pricy, sure, but already a product.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  Cassandra
November 19, 2016 9:19 pm

Willis writes

And it’s not bad enough that we give billions to Musk

Musk hasn’t been given billions, he’s been allowed to not pay billions in tax for the time being. This is the Government doing what the Government does…give society direction. There’s a huge difference.
Incidentally if Tesla didn’t exist, Musk wouldn’t have paid those billions in tax either…

Reply to  Cassandra
November 20, 2016 2:30 am

According to Timttm, Musk would still be irrationally rich, even if the government had not given Musk billions.
Well, Musk is now worth somewhere around $11.5 Billion. Money for free apparently, just gifted to Musk for creating some products and then selling the companies. Followed up by Musk starting more companies with fancy extreme concepts and convincing government and people to give Musk lots of money.
A method strongly resembling Ponzi schemes.
Go ahead and admire such people, if you want.
Don’t worry, we’ll know you wet your pants and that it isn’t raining when you are convinced it is storming.
But you really should learn to watch the pea. Musk has billions now, while many people, including the government are wondering where their products actually are.
And that concept of selling people products a year before they are made; or perhaps better phrased as many months before said cars can be constructed, before machinery is ready, before people are trained, before supplies are located, purchased and delivered… Well, that concept does have a name. Someday, watch the Music Man for a very unusual happy ending version; instead of riding a fence rail, covered in tar and feathers, heading out of town.

Steve T
Reply to  Cassandra
November 21, 2016 7:41 am

ATheoK
November 20, 2016 at 2:30 am
……………
…………….
And that concept of selling people products a year before they are made; or perhaps better phrased as many months before said cars can be constructed, before machinery is ready, before people are trained, before supplies are located, purchased and delivered… Well, that concept does have a name. Someday, watch the Music Man for a very unusual happy ending version; instead of riding a fence rail, covered in tar and feathers, heading out of town.

Absolutely right, but you missed out “finish the design”. I think I read somewhere that there are still design issues to be overcome.
Presumably, the refundable deposit is only refundable if the company is still solvent. From reading between the lines the deposits have been spent on other things, not on solving or setting up the list of things needing to be done above.
SteveT

MarkW
Reply to  Cassandra
November 21, 2016 8:47 am

SteveT: Unsecured debtors, which is what the people who have made these deposits are, are paid last. Unless they can get Obama to ignore bankruptcy laws a certain car company did back in 2008.

PiperPaul
Reply to  John Hardy
November 19, 2016 7:51 pm

Electrek is a news site tracking the transition from fossil fuel transportation to electric and the surrounding clean ecosystems.
I wonder if Electrek receives government subsidies? You know, for independent and impartial review of renewable technologies. Because the evil fossil fuel energy companies squelch all news of their pure, always-cost-sompetitive, never taxpayer-funded competition.

MarkW
Reply to  PiperPaul
November 21, 2016 8:47 am

What’s clean about electric?

rogerknights
November 19, 2016 4:28 pm

I replaced my asphalt roof with a metal one 15 years ago and I’m glad I did.

rogerknights
Reply to  rogerknights
November 19, 2016 4:30 pm

The plywood panels that go under a metal roof strengthen the house against earthquakes.

MarkW
Reply to  rogerknights
November 21, 2016 8:48 am

There’s a plywood panel beneath asphalt shingles as well.

Roger Knights
Reply to  MarkW
November 21, 2016 10:22 am

What my house had under its shingles were “battens” (I think that’s the word)—planks that lacked the resistance to twisting motion that earthquakes cause, and which gradually levers nails out of their holes.

MarkW
Reply to  rogerknights
November 21, 2016 12:46 pm

Roger, I’ve never seen that. Every construction I have ever seen has used plywood. Overall it’s cheaper.

Roger Knights
Reply to  MarkW
November 24, 2016 9:28 pm

Wikipedia says the commercial production of now-standard 4 by 8 plywood panels in the US began in 1928. My house was built in 1927,

Curious George
November 19, 2016 4:29 pm

STOP SUBSIDIZING INEFFICIENT TECHNOLOGIES THAT ARE NOT READY FOR MARKET!!
I agree, with exceptions:
1. A new technology may need a subsidy. See Nuclear.
2. The subsidy should be limited to something not exceeding 10 calendar years. That means 10 years for a technology, not 10 years for a company which applies in Year 9.
3. Alternatively, the subsidy should be structured to disappear after 10 years.

Duster
Reply to  Curious George
November 19, 2016 6:53 pm

The “gotcha” is that the technology, if successful or successfully mythologized, will generate enough income or subsidy to purchase the necessary congress and senate critters to maintain the subsidy long past the time it no longer serves the purpose.

GregK
Reply to  Curious George
November 20, 2016 7:29 am

And who is to select the “technology” to subsidise ?
Did the companies established by Mr Benz, Mr Old and Mr Ford receive subsidies ?
No, they succeeded because because their products [motor cars] were better than other transport options.
As an unintended consequence their products vastly improved the environments of cities by removing tonnes [ or tons] of horse excrement from streets.

MarkW
Reply to  Curious George
November 21, 2016 8:49 am

If it needs a subsidy, then it isn’t ready for the market.
The vast majority of new technologies never get a penny in government subsidies yet survived, even thrived, anyway.

Greg
November 19, 2016 4:30 pm

If you have a roofer who will install a 40 year shingled roof for $3.80/sq ft, please, please, share the contact with us! You’ll save us all a ton of money!

drwilliams
November 19, 2016 4:33 pm

Asphalt shingles comprise about half of the U.S. roofing market. The average life of a 3-tab asphalt shingle is 15-20 years; architectural laminates have an average life of 25-30 years. The expected lifetime is roughly proportional to weight: 190-240 pounds per square for 3-tab, and 300-360 for architectural.
To get a reliable roof lifetime of 40-50 years or more you need to be looking at metal roofing products or concrete tile, which are growing in market share. Slate and clay (terra cotta) tile are 100-year products, but extremely expensive and shrinking in market share. Metal roofing is lighter than asphalt, whereas tile and slate are much heavier, typically 600-1000 pounds per square or more. Heavier roofing materials require structural reinforcement. Since re-roofing is the bulk of the market, one consideration would be getting a product that is light enough to be an alternative to architectural shingles without structural reinforcement.
Hail is one of the primary causes of early failure in asphalt roofs. UL 2218 and FM 4473 test roofing materials for impact resistance, dropping steel balls or firing ice balls with compressed air. Where are the test results?
PV shingles have the additional complication of requiring connections which represent thousands of potential points of failure. How robust is the design to failure of a shingle? What are the standards to which the connections are designed? Can you walk on them to do ordinary maintenance, or are special procedures required?
New roofing materials are typically tested in the real world with test installations in parts of the country with different climates. Has this testing started? How does roof deck temperature compare with conventional tiles?
Will there be a jobsite testing protocol, or will the installer assume that every shingle delivered is PV functional? What kind of time premium is required for installation of the circuitry?
Lots of questions, but as Willis points out, a taxpayers first response should be to grab their wallet.

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  drwilliams
November 19, 2016 5:47 pm

“How robust is the design to failure of a shingle? ”
You would have to install them in parralel, not series, which means inverters and transformers are a must.

Leo Smith
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
November 20, 2016 12:20 am

Inverters and transformers are a must anyway.
But high voltage is preferred because the concomitantly lower current reduces the effect of resistance in the circuitry, and both the cables and the inverter will be subject to far less looses.

MarkW
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
November 21, 2016 8:53 am

In series, the loss of a single cell can dramatically decrease the output from the line, or even make the whole line stop producing altogether.
Think of the older, pre-led Christmas lights. (The small ones, not the big ones.) When one bulb goes out, the whole string goes dead. Then you have to test them one by one to find the burned out one.

Paul Westhaver
November 19, 2016 4:44 pm

Just another move by Musk playing his shell game.
Give me money for my Teslas…
While you find out that my Teslas are impractical coal burners I will launch rockets into space so that I can destabilize my critics who think I make cars. I make rockets you dope.
While you find out that Mars expeditions are another boondoggle, I will roll out solar panel roofing tiles so that you are stuck in the past criticizing my coal-powered cars and space boodoggle. I am a solar power manufacturer. Now that you are complaining about my roofing tile solar collector, I am busy launching my AI project under Hillary Clinton… what? oops….Trump…
Quick hire more lawyers and accountants. I’ll be in Canada.

yarpos
Reply to  Paul Westhaver
November 20, 2016 1:04 pm

Excellent summary of the game so far

Bruce Cobb
November 19, 2016 4:49 pm

“Electricity,” Musk said, “is just a bonus.” This guy is slick, possibly genius. At snakeoil salesmanship. Selling ice to Eskimos would be child’s play for him.

TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 4:52 pm

Willis writes

Next, firemen hate rooftop solar for a good reason.

The output from solar panels is low voltage. The inverter turns it into high voltage AC but not on the “roof side”. Are you sure its actually a “good” reason?
Also

Well, the man who has made billions with a “b” by sponging off of your taxpayer dollars

There is a certain amount of irony here. Musk’s billions of “taxpayer money” seems to be almost entirely tax credits. That means he’s not paying tax…for the moment. One might ask who really is at the trough here because it seems to me that until Musk’s companies are profitable, he’s simply not filling it for others.

gnomish
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 5:29 pm

your point about low voltage is entirely valid, sir. thanks for thinking.
but musk’s subsidies are not all tax credits is the sense you describe:
” $195 million in transferable tax credits – which Tesla could sell for cash.”
“selling “carbon credits” to real car companies”
http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-05-07/king-crony-capitalism

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 5:35 pm

Carbon credits aren’t Musk’s doing, he’s just one of many taking advantage of them. Just because they can be sold, doesn’t mean he’s going to sell out for a quick profit. Elon strikes me as someone who is it in for the long haul. He could retire very comfortably right now if he wanted…he’s a driven visionary and I have a lot of respect for the man.

gnomish
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 5:54 pm

tim-
i saw what part of ‘subsidy’ you failed to understand and i gave you some information to help you out.
i won’t bother if you are determined to give me earfinger lala over it.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 5:58 pm

Perhaps you could point out the specific part you think I misunderstand?

gnomish
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 6:03 pm

nope. not worth it.

MarkW
Reply to  gnomish
November 21, 2016 8:56 am

gnomis, Tim believes that because delivery costs are less in the US, that therefore we are being subsidized by the energy companies.

Juan Slayton
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 5:56 pm

The output from solar panels is low voltage.
The output from individual cells is low, but the cells in panels are connected in series, and the panels themselves may also be in series. We are enjoying a splendid sunset at the moment, and my solar output has dropped to zero watts, but the pv voltage still reads 196 volts. Believe me, when the sun is up, it is plenty more than that.

gnomish
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 6:10 pm

juan– if that is so, then what kind of batteries are they charging?
and where in this scheme is there an inverter and why?

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 6:18 pm

Fair enough…but putting them in series is not a necessary feature of Solar Panels. Battery backed ones tend to use low voltage parallel configurations and ultimately we’ll need battery backing to stabilize the grid and optimize generation efficiency at coal fired (for example) power stations.

Juan Slayton
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 6:24 pm

Hi gnomish
The inverter takes the DC output of the panels and converts it to AC to feed it into the power grid. We commonly refer to house current as 110 or 220 volts, but that’s RMS measurement; peak voltages are considerably higher. (Think 160 for your wall plugs.) Like most grid connections, I have no batteries. Though I hope some day there will be practical batteries that will let me disconnect from the grid entirely. It’s clear that Mr. Musk hasn’t got a solution for that.
Our local code requires a panel disconnect that is accessible from outside the house. But that only protects the utility workers–that high voltage is still there on the roof and in the conduits down to the inverter. So, out of consideration for the firefighters, we only allow fires at night, when the panels are inactive. : > )

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 6:34 pm

It’s clear that Mr. Musk hasn’t got a solution for that.

He does, though.
https://naturalsolar.com.au/tesla-powerwall-2/

Juan Slayton
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 6:41 pm

Tim,
He maybe thinks he does. I don’t think his power wall comes close to making economic sense. Seems to me somebody (maybe Willis?) took it apart on WUWT no too long ago.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 6:52 pm

Willis’ analysis was based on current prices of Li-ion batteries. Musk is addressing that one too with his largely automated mega factory that will double the worlds Li battery manufacturing capability. PV panel prices have dropped to the point where they’re becoming viable now. I’d expect the battery price to come down too.

gnomish
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 6:57 pm

tnx, juan.
i’m wondering if, with battery storage, those cells get connected in series up to line voltage (which consequent lower current) only to be inverted and transformed downward to charge the batteries, you see.
or would they be run at a lower voltage and higher current to charge the batteries and then inverted and transformed to line voltage.

Juan Slayton
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 7:14 pm

gnomish
Gotta confess I don’t know zip about the power conditioning strategies of battery systems. I could speculate, but there are likely readers here who are well informed. Maybe Willis….?

Duster
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 7:18 pm

In fact, there are regions in Nevada, for example the near-ghost town of Silver Peak, where the primary remaining industry was lithium extraction from wells in a deep playa accumulation. Ironically, despite the abundance of the element locally, for some reason, they could not produce it economically enough to keep the town alive. When I was there the bars were shutting down from lack of customers.

lee
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 9:13 pm

Timthe Toolman, “Have you ever touched a car battery’s terminals? Plenty of energy and current potential there…”
Yeah. Now consider a 3.6kw system. At 12v volts that is 300 Amps continuous. A short circuit current would be much higher.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 9:39 pm

lee writes

Yeah. Now consider a 3.6kw system.

No you still need a higher voltage for electrocution. Are you familiar with the relevant simple formula I=V/R for DC? V is 12, R is determined by the resistance of the skin, gloves, whatever …basically its another constant in this case and from that you derive I, the current, and its approximately the same for a “3.6kW” Solar system at 12V as it is for a car battery at 12V.

lee
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 11:11 pm

“Are you familiar with the relevant simple formula I=V/R for DC? V is 12, ”
How do you think I calculated 300 Amps? 😉

lee
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 19, 2016 11:16 pm

Actually I used I=P/E

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 20, 2016 12:31 am

Actually I used I=P/E

300A wont flow unless R is sufficiently low…and its not. As I said, there is plenty of power available in a car battery to kill if that were possible. A shorted car battery is capable of delivering way more than 300A
Here is a paper where they tested that and one result was 5450A
http://www.battcon.com/papersfinal2003/korinekpaperfinal2003.pdf

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 20, 2016 1:09 am

So just for a test, I used my trusty multimeter to work out from thumb to thumb I have a resistance of about 2.6Mohm, that’s across my heart and the kind of path I might make that might kill me…so that means for 12V I can expect about 4.5uW current. Not much at all.
I’d say from hand to foot would have a considerably higher resistance.
As you can see from this reference…
http://hypertextbook.com/facts/2000/JackHsu.shtml
You need orders of magnitude more DC current to kill.

lee
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 20, 2016 1:38 am

Timthe Toolman, “I used my trusty multimeter”
Generally 9v. Did you try it after thoroughly wetting your hands? The resistance will be lower.
Thank you for the reference-
“Currents of approximately 0.2 A are potentially fatal, because they can make the heart fibrillate, or beat in an uncontrolled manner.”
4.5uW of current? Did you mean uA(mps).

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  Juan Slayton
November 20, 2016 1:47 am

Did you mean uA(mps).
Yes. And I had moist hands and furthermore pushed the pointy ends of the leads into my skin. It was about as good a connection as one could reasonably expect to achieve.
Well less than the 0.2A needed…and that’s why 12V is safe.

lee
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 7:42 pm

TimtheToolman, “The output from solar panels is low voltage. ”
Yep and of course high current. Now how does a welder work?

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  lee
November 19, 2016 7:51 pm

Yep and of course high current.

The risk of electrocution is much greater at high voltages.

lee
Reply to  lee
November 19, 2016 8:39 pm

And it is the current that kills. Firefighters – Hot, sweaty- low skin resistance.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  lee
November 19, 2016 8:48 pm

….wearing protective gear… 12V systems are not going to kill you, full stop. Have you ever touched a car battery’s terminals? Plenty of energy and current potential there… Similarly for 24V systems and its only 48V systems that will be at all dangerous and even then you’d have to be unlucky!
The fireman is on the roof of a burning building. Its not like he’s not doing something very risky!

lee
Reply to  lee
November 19, 2016 9:25 pm

TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 at 8:48 pm
Sorry answered up thread.

lee
Reply to  lee
November 19, 2016 9:28 pm

BTW- Firefighters protective gear is leather gloves. Often soaked leather gloves.

Jer0me
Reply to  lee
November 19, 2016 9:54 pm

I used to run a broken (leaking) bottle-washer at 24V, and the entire electrical part was continually flooded with water. It worked fine, and there was no risk of electrocution. It eventually failed, only due to corrosion.

yarpos
Reply to  lee
November 20, 2016 3:32 am

I can up the ante on this discussion about DC power. I have personally put my hands on bus bars coming off a 48V telephone exchange battery capable of 4800A and I am still here typing. Problems do arise from dropping spanners or aluminium ladders across them , most spectacular.

Reply to  lee
November 20, 2016 2:12 pm

As a friend of min used to say: “It’s the volts that jolt and the mills that killl!”
With a dry body impedance of more than 2Mohms there’s not much risk, standing soaking wet in a puddle of water different situation.

dan no longer in CA
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 8:34 pm

Most grid-tie inverters have no transformer, so the DC input voltage needs to be greater than the 240 Volt AC output. This one, for example https://www.solar-electric.com/lib/wind-sun/SB6-11TLUS-12-specs.pdf Has a maximum 600 Volt DC input. The roof cells are wired in series to get these high voltages. The purpose of the cutoff switch is to protect the power company lineman who is working to restore grid power in an emergency and does not want some residence to energize the lines he is working on. So even if the cutoff switch is open, a fireman could encounter up to 600 V on the house roof.

Leo Smith
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 12:27 am

Your point about low voltage is entirely incorrect. Each panel has an array of cells arranged in series. And panels are arranged in series. Series to increase voltage to reduce losses elsewhere.
Sure a photocell is only a few hundred millivolts, but a hundred in series is not. A typical panel is 12-24V output, and ten of those in series is 120-240V on a fine hot day..and that is enough to kill and burn easily.
Fireman now understand that, and should come equipped with wire cutters to isolate the panels one from another.
If there is not some other way to achieve this.

MarkW
Reply to  Leo Smith
November 21, 2016 9:00 am

PS: The time it takes the fireman to safely deactivate your solar panels, is time that the fire is getting bigger and destroying more of your stuff.

yarpos
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 3:20 am

yes good reason, high current DC is dangerous. Also all solar installations are not the same, mine is micro invertor based at the panels so 240V starts on the roof

MarkW
Reply to  yarpos
November 21, 2016 9:02 am

DC is more dangerous than AC. With AC, there’s a zero cross over 120 times a second, this makes it easier to break an arc. New regulations require active monitoring for arcs on panels as well as positive disconnect features for when an arc is detected.

MarkW
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 21, 2016 8:55 am

For someone who pretends to know a lot about solar, you sure don’t know much about solar.
The output of individual cells is low, but the cells are always mounted in series to produce much higher voltages. For some types of panels, up to 5kVDC.

Tobyw
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 30, 2016 3:43 am

Musk will save the government plenty with his reuseable rockets and competition. Look at the boondoggle Space Shuttle turned out to be!

SMC
November 19, 2016 4:56 pm

Sounds like Mr. Musk is using tech similar to what DOW developed years ago. I remember talking to some DOW folks about solar roof shingles, when they were still a new idea, years ago.

Analitik
November 19, 2016 5:07 pm

You can add that the roof structure in most shingle roofed houses would need to be beefed up to support the far greater weight of tiles. Yet another Elron fantasy to sucker in the gullible, as usual.
We welcome all supplicants with open arms to the Church of Elontology
Now please join us for The Musk Prayer
Our saviour who sleeps in Freemont
Elon be thy name
On conference calls
Thy tell us tales
of profits that are non-GAAP
Tweet us this day our daily hype
and forgive those with bearishness
as we forgive thee for diluting thy stock
And lead us not into profitability
but deliver SolarCity more capital
For Tesla is the future
of the auto and for energy
until institutions sell out
Then Chapter Seven

gnomish
Reply to  Analitik
November 19, 2016 5:34 pm

a roof built for terra cotta tiles is skip-sheeted
http://brazilqualityroofing.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/skip-sheeting-300×225.jpg
terra cotta is framed differently than shingle or slate roof and it is cheaper than plywood.
the cost of the framing is irrelevant.

Sweet Old Bob
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 6:20 pm

Those rafters look awfully small for a terra cotta roof …and the spacing dimension is ??

gnomish
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 6:28 pm

i fukt up, bob.
skip sheeting is for shakes, not tiles.
sorry.

gnomish
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 6:39 pm
Sweet Old Bob
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 6:44 pm

Thanks , gnomish . Makes sense now . 8<))

RAH
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 7:26 pm

BTW that framing is the same that was used for standard 3 tab shingles up until the 1950’s also. The original part of my house, built in 1943, has those 3/4″ x 4″ slats. And no, it never had a tile roof.

gymnosperm
Reply to  gnomish
November 20, 2016 9:45 am

Skip sheeting is obsolete. Its purpose was to prolong the life of shakes by cooling and drying them from underneath. If you try to get a permit to reroof a skip sheeted house they will make you put plywood over the skip as a structural diaphragm and furr up like another picture.
Musk’s own house looks great with his “slate” and so would mine. His dormers required a lot more cuts that the simple gables his shingles are usually shown on. My asphalt is 35 years old and a nightmare of hips and valleys. Nevertheless, I would use his slate if 1) they were for sale, 2) the cuts could be done, and 3) I could figure out how to wire several thousand of them together reliably.

MarkW
Reply to  gnomish
November 21, 2016 9:04 am

gnomish, for terra-cotta you need twice as many trusses, at least, plus the trusses have more internal bracing. The cost of a roof structure to support terra-cotta is usually about twice what it is for asphalt. Plus you lose the ability to store stuff in the attic, since it’s full of trusses now.

Tobyw
Reply to  Analitik
November 30, 2016 3:59 am

Tesla shows a profit if you back out the R&D, that includes his battery plant in Nevada. http://interestingengineering.com/video/get-glimpse-teslas-impressive-gigafactory/
Note:three stories high!

November 19, 2016 5:12 pm

Good post Willis, electric cars would certainly be contributors to our transportation needs in the personal transport department if the US had kept on track to build and and bring on line ever more advanced nuclear power. The regulatory mission of the NRC is going to need a good old fashioned house cleaning in order to get that rolling again. There is no substitute for a robust power grid for rapid economic advance.

Thomas Agerbaek
November 19, 2016 5:39 pm

“Stop subsidizing inefficient technologies…”
Wrong. Stop subsidizing anything.

Leo Smith
Reply to  Thomas Agerbaek
November 20, 2016 12:38 am

Capitalism is a subsidy to build something that one hopes will provide future returns.
So no, dont ‘stop subsidizing anything’. However the role of the State in subsidy is a different matter. Arguably the state should not subsidize anything.

gnomish
Reply to  Leo Smith
November 20, 2016 2:47 am

you’re not the only one here who has made up his own language, i see.
pray, what do you mean by capitalism and what do you mean by subsidy?
if i go by the dictionary, your statement makes no sense at all…

November 19, 2016 5:43 pm

The folks in River City have their marching band, their monorail…and now they’re ready for a visit from Elon Musk.
Somebody buy him a chequered suit and bow tie so he can really look the part. (He, er, doesn’t buy stuff himself. He has certain principles.)

Cassandra
November 19, 2016 5:43 pm

What an article. Regarding “billions with a “b” by sponging off of your taxpayer dollars” do you have source? According to Bloomberg they’ve paid off their loan, has Ford and Nissan? In which case, is it a valid argument?
So, next, what subsidises are you talking about? the gigafactory? In which case many cities tempt businesses by offering less-tax-payable, in which case, not really a loss, more like less gain – but balanced by local construction, local jobs etc etc, this is a frequently used mechanism.
So I agree that subsidies for any businesses are bad – but loans – that will hopefully be paid back, I’m less worried about them.
Now, the tiles, your worry is “First off, glass is heavy” and thus worry about shipping. But in your quoted article Musk is specifically paraphrased as saying ‘…weigh as little as a fifth of current products…’ seems like a bit of a saving there. There’s also a material test involving traditional vs tesla roofing. It seems to hold up OK.
Your entire article seems to be a little to fervent……

dan no longer in CA
Reply to  Cassandra
November 20, 2016 9:18 am

Cassandra says: “According to Bloomberg they’ve paid off their loan, has Ford and Nissan? In which case, is it a valid argument?” Ford never got a federal loan. They weathered the business downturn by selling off their interest in Mazda and their ownership of Jaguar and Volvo. As for Nissan, they are not a U.S. company and received no loan.

davideisenstadt
Reply to  dan no longer in CA
November 21, 2016 6:14 am

oooof.

MarkW
Reply to  dan no longer in CA
November 21, 2016 9:07 am

What’s really sad, is that he actually believes those are the only subsidies. PS, if they paid normal interest on the loans, than it wasn’t much of a subsidy.

gnomish
November 19, 2016 5:43 pm

But here’s what the installed costs look like for the roughly 3,000 square feet of roofing needed to cover an average size home in the U.S.
Clay Tile: $16,000
Asphalt: $20,000
Slate: $45,000
http://www.consumerreports.org/roofing/heres-how-much-teslas-new-solar-roof-shingles-could-cost/

gnomish
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 6:15 pm

Proud Skeptic
Reply to  gnomish
November 19, 2016 6:33 pm

I just had about 25 squares of architectural asphalt shingle roof installed on a house for under $300/Square. For 3000 SF, it would be $9,000. I don’t know where Consumer Reports is getting its number from.

gnomish
Reply to  Proud Skeptic
November 19, 2016 6:47 pm

$275 a square for a weekend warrior or storm chaser who works without any liability insurance and does not have any worker’s comp or pay taxes.
up to $750 per square for a fully warrantied job completed by a high-end exterior remodeling company.

Proud Skeptic
Reply to  Proud Skeptic
November 20, 2016 2:23 pm

Gnomish…
Nope…a real contractor with liability insurance and everything (I live in RI). The labor part of it was about $55 a square. New roof…no rip off. It is a good price, I know, but not some weekend warrior.
I have extensive experience with this stuff. This was a good price but not ridiculously low.

gnomish
Reply to  Proud Skeptic
November 20, 2016 6:12 pm

please excuse my laziness to make such generalizations.
having the experience of first hand information in st louis, houston, los angeles and seattle as well as your present home, would you say your anecdote represents an average that would be useful for consumer reports magazine to use in to estimate job cost for someone in another location?

Bill Illis
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
November 20, 2016 9:48 am

$70,000 to $100,000 doesn’t even show up on the bell-curve (this chart is just asphalt shingles – double for steel – triple for slate..
http://www.kompareit.com/images/cost-roof-installation.jpg

Proud Skeptic
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
November 20, 2016 2:24 pm

Willis…you are exactly right. This whole thing about these tiles being “cheap” or something is just plain absurd.

MarkW
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
November 21, 2016 9:14 am

Maybe they could warranty the structure for 100 years. However, long before that 100 years is up, those panels won’t be producing any electricity at all.
Normal panels are warrantied for 40 years or less, and experience has shown that they wear out a lot faster than that.

Oldseadog
Reply to  gnomish
November 20, 2016 3:12 am

Even though slate is the most expensive, after 100 years all you have to do is renew the nails and you get another 100 years at the cost of nails and labour.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
November 19, 2016 5:54 pm

Willis writes

It’s all money out of the taxpayer’s pocket.

No its not. Its a reduction of tax income to the government which could impact a government’s ability to provide services but the US government has an enormous number of places where it could cut its spending and have orders of magnitude greater impact than EV tax subsidies.

PiperPaul
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 7:58 pm

Is TimTheToolMan a Musk investor?

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 8:34 pm

No. Nor do I own a Tesla.
I do, however support our move towards renewable energy and electric cars and align with Musk’s vision. I dont believe AGW is going to be catastrophic and think the immediate benefits of CO2 outweigh the possible future risks and am not opposed to using fossil fuels for as long as it takes to make the transition. I also dont believe we need to aggressively transition but I do believe we need incentives to make it happen because we need to be heading there.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 19, 2016 9:24 pm

Willis writes

taking money out of Willis’s retirement fund

And how exactly is that happening with these tax incentives, Willis?

Leo Smith
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 12:41 am

Dont be silly. Anything that reduces taxes in one place demands increased taxes in another. Unless you cut public spending.

TimTheToolMan
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 20, 2016 1:58 am

Leo Smith writes

Dont be silly.

I’m not. Unless Willis expects to receive money from the government for his retirement, my question stands.
Musk built a battery factory and car factory has directly employed people…people who can use some of that money for their retirement. Also his factories are bringing back some manufacturing to the US. That’s got to be a good thing too as far as ongoing employment.
If none of that had happened no tax would be paid, either. So how is it a loss to Willis that he’s doing this?

MarkW
Reply to  TimTheToolMan
November 21, 2016 9:16 am

It’s not a subsidy if the government is able to make up the cost by cutting some other program.
That’ has to be one of the stupidest things I’ve read today.

MarkW
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
November 21, 2016 9:17 am

Anyone who actually believes that we have to transition to electric cars has demonstrated an inability to think rationally in the first place.

November 19, 2016 5:47 pm

Sorry, Willis: not wrong, but not fully correct.

“I greatly doubt that the largest cost of a slate roof is shipping … digging the slate out of the ground is a major cost.”

Unfortunately, slate is such heavy freight, only rich folks can afford to pay for slate shipped from far away.
Slate is stone, and like marble slabs/blocks, the biggest costs are in shipping.
Unlike granite or even marble, most slate is rather easy to quarry and shape. They use light blasting charges in lines of drilled holes to break free long wide rows of slate blocks.
These slate blocks are picked up by larger pallet lift vehicles and brought to the saws.
Slate layers are split out and the sheets are gang sawn to usable length/widths.
Roofers easily and quickly saw roof slates to size, or as is traditional use of a slate hatchet.
Most sellers and installers of slate roofs try to source their slate locally. Only those selling exotic slate types happily ship slate far.