Friday, July 3, 2015

Too cheap to meter? Not nuclear–solar! | GreenWorld

Solar in China

The nuclear power industry certainly rues the day the concept that atomic electricity would be “too cheap to meter” entered the public’s mind. The phrase has become inextricably linked with nuclear power, but not in the way its creators envisioned: instead of as a success story, it has become a symbol of nuclear power’s economic failure.
“Too cheap to meter” too quickly became “too expensive to use” and “too costly to build.”
So the headline above is offered with some trepidation and a grain of salt; over-promising on solar power will prove no more beneficial than it was for nuclear.
Still, the comparison is obvious. As giant nuclear utilities seek new ways to game the system and bleed ratepayers for every penny they can–whether or not those ratepayers have any anything left to bleed–to prop up reactors that produce electricity normal people simply can’t afford and shouldn’t have to pay for, the cost of solar power just keeps falling and falling.
Today’s case in point: the city of Austin, Texas recently put out bids for 600 Megawatts of new solar power. They received bids for nearly 8,000 MW–a clear indication that we have barely begun to touch the capability of solar to power our nation. Of those bids, nearly 1300 MW, or double what Austin intends to buy, came in under 4 cents per kilowatt/hour...

more: Too cheap to meter? Not nuclear–solar! | GreenWorld

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