CNET’s summary of its own story perfectly captures the highs and lows of solar thermal:

Bottom line:
A large-scale solar power plant with a large energy-storage system that is close to other solar-power systems and the customers they serve could produce electricity for about the same cost as that from standard utility plants. Such a system has yet to be built, however.

Reader support helps sustain our work. Donate today to keep our climate news free.

And in other tauntingly suggestive solar news:

A new mechanism for focusing light on small areas of photovoltaic material could make solar power in residential and commercial applications cheaper than electricity from the grid in most markets in the next few years. Initial systems, which can be made at half the cost of conventional solar panels, are set to start shipping later this year …

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.