Report: Solar Power to Be 50% Cheaper by Year End

Nov 29 2009 | 8:30pm ET

Energy research company New Energy Finance is predicting a 50% year-on-year drop in the “levelized” cost of solar power (that is, the lifetime cost per kWh before subsidies) by the end of 2009.

The report also expects a 10% reduction in the levelized cost of other sources of renewable energy compared to the end of 2008.

The predictions are found in the company’s latest quarterly report.

“So far this year, the steady decline in the cost of equipment in sectors like solar and wind has been largely offset by the increasing costs of financing,” said New Energy Finance chairman and CEO Michael Liebreich in a statement. “By the end of this year, however, as capital markets loosen up and equipment prices continue their decline, we will see the levelized costs decline, finishing the year 10% below the end of last year across the board and far more than that in solar.”

The report notes that photovoltaic (PV) module prices have continued to fall, although the rate of decline has slowed. Thin-film remains the low-cost leader in solar projects, as cheap as $3/W, making thin-film projects 25% less expensive than crystalline silicon systems on a levelized basis. PV projects with tracking systems have seen the least reduction in cost, says New Energy Finance, because “costs for single- and double-axis trackers have remained buoyant relative to panel prices.”

The 50% drop refers to the cost of generating solar power over the lifetime of a solar plant. This cost is now at $160 per megawatt-hour in sunny locales like Arizona.


In Depth

Part II: Roubini Talks Risk, Recovery And The Threat Of A Triple Dip Recession

Oct 21 2014 | 12:41pm ET

In the second half of our interview with Nouriel Roubini, FINalternatives editor...

Lifestyle

Balyasny Pays Over $6M For Lakefront House

Oct 22 2014 | 10:29am ET

A venture headed by hedge fund manager Dmitry Balyasny just paid $6.2 million for...

Guest Contributor

Hedge Funds Weather A Data Management Perfect Storm

Oct 22 2014 | 12:28pm ET

From a regulatory standpoint, nearly every development since the crisis has placed...

 

Videos

Editor's Note

    Guidelines for Guest Articles

    Oct 22 2014 | 9:46am ET

    We are always looking for guest articles from hedge fund managers and buy-side firms.

    If you are interested in submitting a contributed piece for possible publication on FINalternatives, please take a look at the specs. Read more…

 

Futures Magazine

October 2014 Cover

Deeply flawed risk benchmark

Most traders agree that proper risk management is the key to successful trading. However, many traders depend on the deeply flawed measure of standard deviation as a benchmark of risk. Here we put it ...

The Alpha Pages

TAP July/August 2014 Cover

The Alpha Pages Interview: Senator Rand Paul

Senator Paul sat down in the debut series of the Alpha Pages Interview to discuss the broken tax code, regulation surrounding Bitcoin, and his plans for the 2016 Presidential election.