According to the University of Minnesota’s Energy Transition Lab, starting in 2019 and for the foreseeable future, the overall cost of building grid-scale storage will be less than that of building natural-gas plants to meet future energy demand.
A 60-acre solar farm in Camp Ripley, a National Guard base in Minnesota.
One reason mainstream predictions for the uptake of solar energy have been historically so wrong, is that they were always predicated on the high price of solar panels for the average business or homeowner.
What was missed was that solar didn’t have to be the cheapest source of energy at the beginning, all it had to do was start beating out the most expensive sources – which in the utility world, are the “peaking” units that produce power during the highest demand hours of the year. These units, which sometimes are run only a few days, or a few hours a year, represent the highest cost part of the electric grid system.
About a decade ago, a milestone was crossed for solar energy when PV solar installations in California started beating gas turbine peaker plants on price.
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