Wind Turbines

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Re: Wind Turbines

Post by Anaxagoras »

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Re: Wind Turbines

Post by Witness »

I agree that batteries aren't that great (for now). One of the quirks of 'tricity is that it's difficult to store.

In some places (including Australia) solar (or wind) is used to drive pumping stations, that's not bad. As I hinted there is also a market for home solar which doesn't necessarily need batteries, just a variable connection to the grid. In summer you can run your AC all day long practically for free.

And an article:
Solar power is now “cheapest electricity in history”, says IEA

The International Energy Agency has often been mocked for its poor assessment of the potential of solar power, both in terms of deployment and cost reductions, and it is still is. But now, even the IEA has conceded that solar power is low cost, in fact it is now “the cheapest electricity in history.”

This extraordinary admission was included in the 2020 version of its annual reference tome, the World Energy Outlook – a must read for energy wonks and the energy industry, even if its interpretation of industry trends, and its promotion of “business as usual” over climate targets frustrates many.

The WEO2020 includes, for the first time, a scenario that is broadly consistent with what might be needed to try and cap average global warming to a maximum 1.5°C, rather than the second prize of 2.0°C previously modelled under its Sustainable Development Scenarios.

This requires reaching net zero emissions by 2050, rather than 2070, and includes significant emissions reductions over the next decade, driven mostly by a vast increase in wind and solar production, a shift to electric vehicles, and “behavioural changes” that could reduce demand.

The IEA appears ready to embrace this because it has discovered that solar is much cheaper than it thought – in fact, up to 50 per cent cheaper than its estimates of just two years ago, in WEO2018. And it’s not the market that’s changed, so much as IEA’s interpretation of the facts.

The key to the IEA’s re-assessment is the cost of capital of wind and solar, which it now admits is as low as 2.6 per cent in Europe and the US, and far below its previously assumed range of 7-8 per cent.

That means that solar can now be produced “at or below” $US20 a megawatt hour, as has been delivered in auctions in Portugal ($US13/MWh) and the Middle East. It is now so cheap that the IEA says: “For projects with low-cost financing that tap high-quality resources, solar PV is now the cheapest source of electricity in history.”

Even on the IEA’s modified “value adjusted levellised cost of electricity” (VALCOE), which includes the simulated value of three system services: energy, flexibility and capacity, solar still beats coal and gas in all continents, and is beaten only by onshore wind in Europe. ... iea-39195/ with some graphs.