No longer must we wonder whether renewable energy resources can power our future economy, but rather, “how quickly can we reach a truly low-carbon future?” Simply put, it’s now safe to say that clean energy isn’t just winning—it has officially won. As we focus our efforts on accelerating the adoption of clean energy, here are five compelling reasons why the clean energy future can’t be stopped. 1. Perhaps the most surefire proof of a global transition to clean energy is to follow the money. The research teams at Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) report that “Renewable energy sources are set to represent almost three quarters of the $10.2 trillion the world will invest in new power generating technology until 2040.” 2. Renewable Energy’s Biggest Myth Goes Bust. The “expensive” renewables myth is dead and we killed it. In late December 2017, RMI announced that construction began on a 3 MW solar project in New Mexico that will sell its power below 4.5 cents per kilowatt-hour. This price is officially the lowest reported contract for distributed photovoltaic solar energy across the entire U.S., beating coal prices that average 6 cents and up per kilowatt-hour and competing with natural gas prices averaging 4.2 cents and up, according to Lazard. In January 2018, Colorado utility company Xcel Energy received “shockingly low bids” for electricity from renewable sources.? Wind power bids had a median average price of 1.8 cents per kilowatt-hour, and solar’s median bid was 2.95 cents per kilowatt hour. Even with storage technology costs included—allowing renewables to generate 24/7 just like fossil fuels—the average wind price was 2.1 cents per kilowatt hour and the average solar price was 3.6 cents per kilowatt hour. 3 Big Business is All-in on Renewables. In 2017 corporate renewable energy buyers reached a cumulative 10 gigawatts (GW) of new renewable energy projects. This milestone means that corporate-backed renewable projects now power the equivalent of more than 7 million homes. 4. Dead Man Driving. The days of internal-combustion-powered transportation appear to be coming to a rapid close. 5. The renewables revolution is here to stay, but don’t take it from us. Take it from the likes of Shell, BP, and Exxon. These oil and gas giants are already planning for a low-carbon world with new investments in renewable energy companies and new climate initiatives in the wake of pressure from key shareholders.
Renew Economy 24th Jan 2018 read more »