KUALA LUMPUR: Solar enthusiasts are jumping on the bandwagon to promote the renewable energy (RE) source, harping that it is freely available and more cost-effective. But is this true? And is too much solar a good thing? Let’s explore this further. Solar is available only during the day, thus you still need to cater for energy during the night. This will normally be provided by other conventional plants (i.e coal, gas and hydro). This means that conventional plants are still needed even though solar is introduced into the system. Alternatively, battery can also be used to store some of the solar energy for the night. However, this comes as an additional cost. Battery technology is still new and expensive with a current price tag of RM5000/kW, compared with RM3000/kW for the typical cost of a gas plant. Not only are batteries for the power system costly, they can only be used for a limited time, depending on their type and design. A 100MW solar plant is not equivalent to a ... » Learn More about Solar in Malaysia – Challenges, and too much of a good thing?