Reasons to love renewables – #2 economics

Did you know that switching to renewable energy sources not only protects the environment, but also saves money? Here are some interesting facts and figures:

In many European countries, including Germany, Spain, Great Britain, Greece and Portugal, electricity sourced from solar power is already significantly cheaper than that sourced from the main public grid. I read this in the current report of the European Technology and Innovation Platform for Photovoltaics ETIP PV. And why is this? The biggest reason is because prices for photovoltaic modules have fallen by up to 90% since 2009.

 

Renewables are not only the cleaner but often also the cheaper alternative

 

The trend toward 24 hours of sun has caught on in countries outside of Europe as well, including India, China, Nigeria and Mexico. In India, for example, the price for solar power has dropped by 40% compared to the previous year – again, making it cheaper than the standard electricity sourced from the grid. The country is planning to meet 60% of its electricity needs from renewable sources by 2027. A fantastic plan if you ask me! In Chile, I found another example of someone getting it right: Solarpack, a solar power producer, offers prices that are almost 60% lower than that of a new natural gas power plant. A clear win for green energy!

 

Denmark, Egypt, Mexico, Peru and the United Arab Emirates have also recognized the economic advantages of renewables and are taking action. New agreements are setting prices for green electricity at USD 5 cents/kWh or even less. Wow – that’s a lot less than you would have to pay in these countries for energy sourced from fossil fuels or even nuclear power!

 

But what saddens me is that some politicians – in the US, for example – don’t understand how economical and efficient renewable energy production really is. This is despite the fact that the United States employs about 400,000 workers in the renewable energy sector – compared to only 85,000 in the coal industry! If nothing else, these numbers show that the renewable energy revolution has begun and cannot be stopped! An incredible 161 gigawatts of renewables were fed into the grid worldwide last year alone, bringing total capacity to over 2,000 gigawatts! Now that’s impressive!

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