June 20, 2017


Solar energy is killing coal, despite Trump's promises (Matt Egan, June 20, 2017, CNN Money)

By 2040, U.S. power generation from renewable energy is likely to skyrocket by 169%, according to a recent forecast from the research firm Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Coal-fired power is projected to plunge by 51% in the United States over the same period.

"The greening of the world's electricity system is unstoppable," wrote Seb Henbest, the lead author.

Despite Trump's promises, more and more electric utilities are expected to dump coal as businesses and individuals adopt solar panels. That's because of a simple economic reality: Renewable energy costs are poised to continue dropping thanks to a gush of investment.

The Bloomberg researchers measured energy costs by calculating the lifetime expenses of generating power from a new plant, including permitting and expenses.

On that basis, the cost of electricity from solar has already cratered by nearly 75% since 2009, and it's expected to plummet 66% further by 2040, according to the forecast.

Solar is already "at least as cheap as coal" in some countries, including the United States, Germany, Australia, Spain and Italy, the report said. The cost of wind power could also be cut in half.

Posted by at June 20, 2017 8:03 AM