I am in Tenerife, probably the most blessed of the Canary Islands.  While Mallorca is Europe´s Florida, the Canaries are Europe´s Hawaii.  A small group of volcanic islands standing boldly in a vast ocean where rich volcanic soil combines with an eternal spring to produce a rich display of tropical vegetation, at least where rainfall is plentiful.  Where water is scarce, there is desert.

My host manages several condominiums here.  She told me an interesting story about renewable energy.  It seems that at one of the condominium swimming pools they installed solar panels to heat the pool.   They had to also keep the oil fueled heater but were assured that adding the solar panels would provide sufficient heat for most of the year, since the sun shines here  year´round, and thus save money on fuel bills.

In spite of the sales pitch given for the solar panels, my friend said the actual results have been a large bill for maintaining the solar panels and the electric bill has risen substantially.  Why the electric bill increase, I asked?  Because they had to install a pump to pump water through the solar panels and the pump runs on electric power.  Yes, the fuel oil bill lowered but the savings were more than offset by the increase in the electric bill.

Any wonder why there is still substantial caution about running pell-mell to renewable energy?