No need to apologize. Everyone’s good at something and bad at something else.
That aside, I’m just not finding evidence that solar production is down at all, much less by 50%. I can see where solar installs could drop, because once you buy a solar system, you don’t need to buy it again for several decades, and so eventually solar will saturate the market.
The way to up the production again is to make solar cheaper to install. I don’t have a solar roof because I don’t have $35,000 just lying around. Drop that by 10 grand or so, and it’s much more likely that I’d pull the trigger.
Even at $35,000 the ROI is pretty good - I pay about $200 / month in electric bills. That’s $2,400 per year. Solar roofs are generally warrantied for 20 years, which means I’d save $48,000 in electric bills for a minimum savings of $13,000. It’d be a sound financial move for me if I only had the startup cash!
And the numbers get even better if you have an electric car. I talked to a guy a few years ago who bought a used Tesla Model S for $40,000 (and because he needed a car anyway, it’s improper to count the whole cost of the car - only the extra money he spent for the Tesla, which comes to maybe 10 grand), then installed the panels.
So now, not only is he potentially saving $48,000 in electric bills, but he’s also saving all that gas money, and he only spent about $10,000 more on the car than he would have if he’d gotten a conventional 2-year-old used high-end car.
Then you add on top of that that, in my state anyway, if you dump surplus power onto the grid, the electric company has to pay you for it. What that boils down to is that the electric company is paying him to fuel up his car.
That kind of setup makes a lot of economic sense, and the only real barrier right now is money - you’ve gotta have a lot of it in order to realize the savings. Most people with money who are interested in signing on have at this point already done so, so yes, it’s entirely feasible that install rates would drop. But momentary drops in sales rates do not automatically mean something is a failure. We do not, to use a current example, consider the turkey industry a failure simply because purchase rates drop after Thanksgiving.
As the prices come down, install rates will rise again because more people who are interested in adopting it will be able to afford it.