Solar Power, Wind Cheaper Than Coal And Nuclear Energy

Households in Australia could be paying up to 30 per cent more for electricity annually by 2025 for coal based and nuclear power compared to a scenario where concentrating solar, wind and hot dry rock geothermal power were widely implemented, according to DESERTEC-Australia.
   
Roger Taylor, a researcher for DESERTEC-Australia, recently stated "’clean coal‘ and ‘next-generation’ nuclear offer only fictitious costs, unproven technologies and dangerous disadvantages."
  
DESERTEC-Australia’s report entitled "Australia: Clean Energy Superpower" says that solar power, geothermal and wind energy is rapidly falling in price and the compounding effects of innovation and experience are bringing them rapidly to carbon-adjusted competitiveness.
  
A massive retirement of coal-fired power plants looms globally. Starting in 2010, much of Australia’s current coal-fired capacity will reach 40+ years of age, meaning it will need replacement and carbon capture won’t be ready. The organisation believes this presents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to make real progress against climate change by a full steam ahead approach to renewable energy.
  
Australia’s leading geothermal energy company believes it can eventually generate hot dry rock geothermal energy for 4.4c per kwh, on par with natural gas without carbon capture and storage. Parabolic trough concentrating solar power could reduce in cost to about 4.4c per kwh by 2015, if not sooner. Wind energy should see generation prices drop to around 5c per kwh by 2020.
 
Given that in a rationally-priced market, renewables are now cheaper now than most fossil fuels for forward planning of new capacity; DESERTEC-Australia believes concentrating solar power, geothermal and wind should be aggressively developed between now and 2020, with current coal-fired capacity progressively idled and natural gas used as a ‘bridge’ energy source.