Solar, wind, and battery prices are dropping so fast that, in Colorado, building new renewable power plus battery storage is now cheaper than running old coal plants. This increasingly renders existing coal plants obsolete. Two weeks ago, Xcel Energy quietly reported dozens of shockingly low bids it had received for building new solar and wind farms, many with battery storage (see table below). The median bid price in 2017 for wind plus battery storage was $21 per megawatt-hour, which is 2.1 cents per kilowatt-hour. As Carbon Tracker noted, this “appears to be lower than the operating cost of all coal plants currently in Colorado.”
Think Progress 10th Jan 2018 read more »
The cost of generating power from onshore wind has fallen by around a quarter since 2010, with solar photovoltaic (PV) electricity costs falling by 73 per cent in that time, according to new cost analysis from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The report also highlights that solar PV costs are expected to halve by 2020. The best onshore wind and solar PV projects could be delivering electricity for an equivalent of USD 3 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh), or less within the next two years.
IRENA 13th Jan 2018 read more »
Renewable energy became the cheapest form of electricity in 58 emerging economies last year. This year, the 11th Lazard’s Levelized Cost of Energy Analysis (LCOE 11.0) showed that solar and wind energy generation costs (at $46 to $53 per megawatt-hour of generation) easily beat coal and gas (at $60-68). Solar power was the fastest-growing source of new energy worldwide in 2016, outpacing the growth in all other forms of power generation for the first time. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), on the back of a strong solar PV market, renewable energy accounted for two-thirds of new power added to the world’s grid last year. In addition to this, solar energy is set to surpass nuclear power by the end of 2017.
Business Green 15th Jan 2018 read more »
Early plans have been submitted to build a windfarm in Caithness which has been criticised for its potential to increase consumers’ electricity bills. E-on has proposed the Camster II windfarm which would have 14 turbines, standing up to 415ft tall, to be built about 4.4 miles south-west of Wick and generate up to 48.3 megawatts (MW). Plans are in their scoping stages. But Caithness-based industry watcher Stuart Young pointed out that nearly £473,000 was paid to E-on between March and August last year, the latest figures obtained from the Renewable Energy Foundation, to compensate the company for the times it shut down its operational 25-turbine Camster windfarm. These so-called “constraint payments” are frequently awarded for switching off turbines to avoid overloading the national grid.
Energy Voice 15th Jan 2018 read more »