Tag Archives: economics

How Steady Can Wind Power Blow?

This is part 2 of a series looking at the economic trends of new energy technologies. Part 1 looked at how cheap solar can get (very cheap indeed).  NREL recently released data showing that next-generation wind turbines could reach an … Continue reading

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How Cheap Can Solar Get? Very Cheap Indeed

What’s the future price of solar? I’ll attempt to make some projections (tentatively) here. tl;dr: If current rates of improvement hold, solar will be incredibly cheap by the time it’s a substantial fraction of the world’s electricity supply. Background: The … Continue reading

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New Solar Capacity Factor in the US is Now ~30%

The capacity factor of new utility scale solar deployed in the US in 2010 was 24%. By 2012 it had risen to roughly 30%. The rising capacity factor of new solar projects is part of why the cost of electricity … Continue reading

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Solar Cost Less than Half of What EIA Projected

Skeptics of renewables sometimes cite data from EIA (The US Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration) or from the IEA (the OECD’s International Energy Agency). The IEA has a long history of underestimating solar and wind that I think is starting … Continue reading

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Solar: The First 1% Was the Hardest

Solar power now provides roughly 1% of the world’s electricity. It took 40 years to reach that milestone. But, as they say in tech, the first 1% is the hardest. You can see why in this chart below. As solar … Continue reading

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Why Energy Storage is About to Get Big – and Cheap

tl;dr: Storage of electricity in large quantities is reaching an inflection point, poised to give a big boost to renewables, to disrupt business models across the electrical industry, and to tap into a market that will eventually top many of … Continue reading

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2014 Was a Good Year: Better Than You Remember

Eric Garner. Michael Brown. The Sony hack and surrender to fear. 2014 seems to be ending on a crappy note. My twitter feed is full of people expressing good riddance to the year. 2014 was better than that. I want … Continue reading

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Solar and Wind Plunging Below Fossil Fuel Prices

Asset management firm Lazard has a fascinating new analysis of renewable and other energy prices out. There are a huge number of insights in this, from an outside analyst whose primary interest is financial. (Those are, in my mind, the … Continue reading

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Carbon Prices Drive Clean Energy Innovation

I want to point out something I see commonly missed.  Carbon prices accelerate innovation that brings down the price of green energy. So do renewable energy portfolio standards, green energy subsidies, and a whole swath of other climate policies. They do this … Continue reading

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The Shrinking Dominance of the Big Dogs in Tech

"In 1981, the top ten technology companies represented 95% of the global IT market cap. Today, that share has fallen to 26% and the ratio continues to fall."   Microsoft, IBM, DEC, HP, and so on were once titans.  Apple, … Continue reading

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