Wind power prices now lower than cost of natural gas

TarponatorTarponator Under a BridgePosts: 12,962 AG
edited August 18 in Off Topic #1
And it's renewable too!

Wind power prices now lower than the cost of natural gas

In the US, it's cheaper to build and operate wind farms than buy fossil fuels.

This week, the US Department of Energy released a report that looks back on the state of wind power in the US by running the numbers on 2018. The analysis shows that wind hardware prices are dropping, even as new turbine designs are increasing the typical power generated by each turbine. As a result, recent wind farms have gotten so cheap that you can build and operate them for less than the expected cost of buying fuel for an equivalent natural gas plant.

...

The levelized cost of electricity, which eliminates the impact of incentives and subsidies on the final prices, places wind below $40/MW-hr in 2018. The cheapest form of natural gas generation was roughly $10 more per MegaWatt-hour. Note that, as recently as 2015, the US' Energy Information Agency was predicting that wind's levelized cost in 2020 would be $74/MW-hr.

Read the rest here:  https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/08/wind-power-prices-now-lower-than-the-cost-of-natural-gas/

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Replies

  • gandrfabgandrfab Posts: 20,965 AG
  • GardawgGardawg Posts: 8,584 Admiral
    I've heard they're really big fans of renewable energy.


    “Today a young man on acid realized that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration, that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively, there is no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we are the imagination of ourselves.

    Heres Tom with the Weather.”
  • Big BatteryBig Battery Posts: 19,495 AG
    Too bad they dont factor in the cost to abandon the wind turbines after they die...

    "Operations and maintenance costs are an important component of the overall cost of wind energy and can vary substantially among projects. Unfortunately, publicly available market data on actual project-level O&M costs are not widely available"

  • treemanjohntreemanjohn Posts: 3,868 Captain
    Nuclear power is also cheaper if I don't have to factor in the cost of the reactor and generator
    We’re like the piggy bank that everybody is robbing, and that ends President Trump
  • BallaCoiPersiciBallaCoiPersici NW Italy (Laveno Mombello)Posts: 4,932 Captain

    It would be amazing see the Keys like this 😖
    Massimo (former Ballak) - Please, be patient for my English

    My YouTube Channel

    I'm typing keeping close my "pasta hole"!
    Choose common sense, boycott political correctness.
  • TarponatorTarponator Under a BridgePosts: 12,962 AG
    edited August 18 #7
    Too bad they dont factor in the cost to abandon the wind turbines after they die...

    "Operations and maintenance costs are an important component of the overall cost of wind energy and can vary substantially among projects. Unfortunately, publicly available market data on actual project-level O&M costs are not widely available"

    Actually, they do factor in operations & maintenance -- you know, the thing they do on turbines so they don't have to abandon them.  If you had continued to read past the first two sentences on Page 54 of the report quoted in the article and by you, you'll see the rest of the section that includes factoring in the cost of operation and maintenance of wind turbines -- including Figure 51 and 52.  

    Although limitations in the underlying data do not permit the influence of these two factors to be unambiguously distinguished, to help illustrate key trends, Figure 52 shows median annual O&M costs over time, based on project age (i.e., the number of years since the commercial operation date) and segmented into three project-vintage groupings.

    In addition, these O&M costs have been included in the cost estimates that show it to be cheaper than gas.

    Source: https://emp.lbl.gov/sites/default/files/wtmr_final_for_posting_8-9-19.pdf

    I hope this helps clear up any confusion you might have on the topic, and please do let me know if you have any more questions.  

    Thanks...Mike
  • treemanjohntreemanjohn Posts: 3,868 Captain
    Will your beloved government allow me to have a couple built in my backyard? 
    We’re like the piggy bank that everybody is robbing, and that ends President Trump
  • zimmy4209zimmy4209 Ocala FloridaPosts: 443 Deckhand
    Geographic location is a big part of wind energy. I've seen them in a few areas on east coast but specifically going through pennsylvania on I81 at the highest elevations in the state there are literally thousands of them everywhere you look. The fan blades alone have to be 250-300 ft long it's pretty impressive. It seems like maybe 1 out of every 10 you see isn't rotating presumably down for maintenance. That's with anything people encounter though you have to take care of stuff if you want it to last
  • dragon baitdragon bait Posts: 7,529 Admiral
    One wind turbine turns to the other and says: what's your favorite genre of music?
     The other wind turbine replies: I'm a big heavy metal fan.
  • MRichardsonMRichardson Posts: 9,327 Admiral
    Turbines are horrible for the environment, unless you don't consider birds/bats part of the environment. 

    Anyone who supports them posing as an "environmentally conscious" sort is a bandwagon-jumping, easily-marketed-to, group-thinking weakmind.
    I have never seen live bones, but I know that they are often used by rich people to decorate the interior.
  • johnpowersjohnpowers BayPosts: 1,652 Captain
    Being subsidized by taxpayers helps. 
  • johnpowersjohnpowers BayPosts: 1,652 Captain

    It would be amazing see the Keys like this 😖
    A proposal to line Hawks Channel from Key Largo to Key West with thousands of them would be met with massive support from environmentalists, fishermen and tourism officials. 

    NOT!!!!!! :D
  • GardawgGardawg Posts: 8,584 Admiral

    It would be amazing see the Keys like this 😖
    A proposal to line Hawks Channel from Key Largo to Key West with thousands of them would be met with massive support from environmentalists, fishermen and tourism officials. 

    NOT!!!!!! :D



    Just imagine they're oil rigs.  Then you can  fantasize about all the fish on those 'structures'. 

    “Today a young man on acid realized that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration, that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively, there is no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we are the imagination of ourselves.

    Heres Tom with the Weather.”
  • dragon baitdragon bait Posts: 7,529 Admiral

    It would be amazing see the Keys like this 😖
    As opposed to
    Image result for oil spill on beach
  • BallaCoiPersiciBallaCoiPersici NW Italy (Laveno Mombello)Posts: 4,932 Captain
    edited August 19 #16
    Episodic (and mostly reversible) accidents versus permanent environmental devastation?
    No game.

    For sure fossil fuels can’t be the future but wind power is not a solution, is just another way to produce energy with a huge environmental impact. At least could become cheaper but not really sustainable.
    The truth is that at the moment the most sustainable energy is the nuclear power.
    I think we have to wait at least 2/3 decades for having a real renewable and fully sustainable source of energy.
    I guess hydrogen is the real solution.
    Massimo (former Ballak) - Please, be patient for my English

    My YouTube Channel

    I'm typing keeping close my "pasta hole"!
    Choose common sense, boycott political correctness.
  • TarponatorTarponator Under a BridgePosts: 12,962 AG
    edited August 19 #17
    Being subsidized by taxpayers helps. 
    Good morning, John.

    Subsidy does help, and I think you are right to point it out.  However, as the the study points out, even after the subsidy goes away wind power is still cheaper.

    On the flip side, how much higher does price of oil become if we factor in the costs of the middle east wars we have fought over it?
  • BallaCoiPersiciBallaCoiPersici NW Italy (Laveno Mombello)Posts: 4,932 Captain
    edited August 19 #18
    Being subsidized by taxpayers helps. 
    On the flip side, how much higher does price of oil become if we factor in the costs of the middle east wars we have fought over it?
    Good point Mike, but war is in the human nature. Humanity started to fight much before the oil became a war reason.
    And I’m pretty sure that humanity will continue to fight until at least two men are walking on the Earth. Maybe for conquering the last active windmill...
    Massimo (former Ballak) - Please, be patient for my English

    My YouTube Channel

    I'm typing keeping close my "pasta hole"!
    Choose common sense, boycott political correctness.
  • johnpowersjohnpowers BayPosts: 1,652 Captain
    Gardawg said:

    It would be amazing see the Keys like this 😖
    A proposal to line Hawks Channel from Key Largo to Key West with thousands of them would be met with massive support from environmentalists, fishermen and tourism officials. 

    NOT!!!!!! :D



    Just imagine they're oil rigs.  Then you can  fantasize about all the fish on those 'structures'. 

    The chances of a single drilling rig getting anywhere near the Keys is below zero. (Except for the ones the Chinese are doing with Cuba but I digress) 
    But wind turbines are another story. 
     It will be fun though to listen to the cries of the enviros.  :D
  • m9000m9000 Posts: 2,058 Captain
    What happens when the wind isn't blowing hard enough to generate electricity?  
  • mplspugmplspug Palmetto FloridaPosts: 9,171 Admiral
    Use the battery stored electricity from when the wind was blowing?

    Captain Todd Approves

  • MRichardsonMRichardson Posts: 9,327 Admiral
    They crank up the fans to create wind to turn the fans next to them. 
    Duh.
    I have never seen live bones, but I know that they are often used by rich people to decorate the interior.
  • TarponatorTarponator Under a BridgePosts: 12,962 AG
    m9000 said:
    What happens when the wind isn't blowing hard enough to generate electricity?  
    Other types of power are ramped up to pick up the slack.

    For instance, instead of running petroleum (and/or nuclear) power plants at (or near) full bore all the time, they could be throttled back when the wind is strong, and throttled up when the wind is weaker.

    Nobody is suggesting going to 100% wind power, and if they did, your question points to the exact reason why we shouldn't.
  • dave44dave44 Posts: 9,294 Admiral
    If other types of electrical generation have the ability to run at variable outputs, and they have to be around anyway, wind and solar are a needless waste of resources and ecosystems.
       Even Tarp agrees nuclear is better. So why rush headlong into bad ideas? Are the environuts really afflicted with tunnel vision so badly they can’t see their follies?
  • cadmancadman Home of the Gators Posts: 28,443 AG
    Google search energy of the future and t]he top results all agree Nuclear will have a role in our future energy supply.

    It is here now, so we should expand our nuclear power plants while we can

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswithabang/2017/04/12/the-future-of-energy-isnt-fossil-fuels-or-renewables-its-nuclear-fusion/#5cde94113bee

    https://news.stanford.edu/2018/05/22/future-energy-stanford-faculty-discuss/

    https://www.cnbc.com/2014/11/24/7-outrageous-energy-sources-of-the-future.html

    I did find the theory of carbon storage really interesting. 

    Mini Mart Magnate

  • TarponatorTarponator Under a BridgePosts: 12,962 AG
    edited August 19 #26
    Interesting articles, Cad.  Thanks for sharing.

    I'm not sure that article from Forbes saying the future of energy is a type of nuclear reactor that hasn't been operationalized yet, but I do appreciate the forward looking nature of it.

    I haven't watched all the videos in the 2nd article, but will try to do so.  Off to dinner shortly....

    The third article was a bit too high level to be particularly insightful, but I did find it interesting that they listed geothermal and wind -- two technologies in place today -- as "outrageous".

    Moving past all that, and f given the choice of petroleum or nuclear, I'd prefer nuclear.

    Frankly, I'd prefer neither, but I'd say nuclear is the lesser of the two evils, so to speak, and clearly both will (and should) play a role going forward as we ramp up more sustainable energy sources.
  • ScminnowScminnow Posts: 3,860 Captain
    https://m.phys.org/news/2019-08-scientists-hydrogen-gas-oil-bitumen.html

    Scientists have developed a large-scale economical method to extract hydrogen (H2) from oil sands (natural bitumen) and oil fields. This can be used to power hydrogen-powered vehicles, which are already marketed in some countries, as well as to generate electricity; hydrogen is regarded as an efficient transport fuel, similar to petrol and diesel, but with no pollution problems. The process can extract hydrogen from existing oil sands reservoirs, with huge existing supplies found in Canada and Venezuela. Interestingly, this process can be applied to mainstream oil fields, causing them to produce hydrogen instead of oil.

    Hydrogen powered vehicles, including cars, buses, and trains, have been in development for many years. These vehicles have been acknowledged to be efficient, but the high price of extracting the Hydrogen from oil reserves has meant that the technology has not been economically viable. Now a group of Canadian engineers have developed a cheap method of extracting H2 from oil sands. They are presenting this work at the Goldschmidt Geochemistry Conference in Barcelona.

    "There are vast oil sand reservoirs in several countries, with huge fields in Alberta in Canada, but also in Venezuela and other countries" said Dr. Ian Gates, of the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Calgary, and of Proton Technologies Inc.).

    Oil fields, even abandoned oil fields, still contain significant amounts of oil. The researchers have found that injecting oxygen into the fields raises the temperature and liberates H2, which can them be separated from other gases via specialist filters. Hydrogen is not pre-existing in the reservoirs, but pumping oxygen means that the reaction to form hydrogen can take place.

    "This technique can draw up huge quantities of hydrogen while leaving the carbon in the ground. When working at production level, we anticipate we will be able to use the existing infrastructure and distribution chains to produce H2 for between 10 and 50 cents per kilo. This means it potentially costs a fraction of gasoline for equivalent output". This compares with current H2 production costs of around $2/kilo. Around 5% of the H2 produced then powers the oxygen production plant, so the system more than pays for itself.

    this is more promising than wind farms
  • dave44dave44 Posts: 9,294 Admiral
    Scminnow said:
    https://m.phys.org/news/2019-08-scientists-hydrogen-gas-oil-bitumen.html

    Scientists have developed a large-scale economical method to extract hydrogen (H2) from oil sands (natural bitumen) and oil fields. This can be used to power hydrogen-powered vehicles, which are already marketed in some countries, as well as to generate electricity; hydrogen is regarded as an efficient transport fuel, similar to petrol and diesel, but with no pollution problems. The process can extract hydrogen from existing oil sands reservoirs, with huge existing supplies found in Canada and Venezuela. Interestingly, this process can be applied to mainstream oil fields, causing them to produce hydrogen instead of oil.

    Hydrogen powered vehicles, including cars, buses, and trains, have been in development for many years. These vehicles have been acknowledged to be efficient, but the high price of extracting the Hydrogen from oil reserves has meant that the technology has not been economically viable. Now a group of Canadian engineers have developed a cheap method of extracting H2 from oil sands. They are presenting this work at the Goldschmidt Geochemistry Conference in Barcelona.

    "There are vast oil sand reservoirs in several countries, with huge fields in Alberta in Canada, but also in Venezuela and other countries" said Dr. Ian Gates, of the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Calgary, and of Proton Technologies Inc.).

    Oil fields, even abandoned oil fields, still contain significant amounts of oil. The researchers have found that injecting oxygen into the fields raises the temperature and liberates H2, which can them be separated from other gases via specialist filters. Hydrogen is not pre-existing in the reservoirs, but pumping oxygen means that the reaction to form hydrogen can take place.

    "This technique can draw up huge quantities of hydrogen while leaving the carbon in the ground. When working at production level, we anticipate we will be able to use the existing infrastructure and distribution chains to produce H2 for between 10 and 50 cents per kilo. This means it potentially costs a fraction of gasoline for equivalent output". This compares with current H2 production costs of around $2/kilo. Around 5% of the H2 produced then powers the oxygen production plant, so the system more than pays for itself.

    this is more promising than wind farms
    I agree, but I keep thinking” Hindenburg “ for some reason?
  • treemanjohntreemanjohn Posts: 3,868 Captain

    It would be amazing see the Keys like this 😖
    A proposal to line Hawks Channel from Key Largo to Key West with thousands of them would be met with massive support from environmentalists, fishermen and tourism officials. 

    NOT!!!!!! :D
    Environmentalists are all for infringing on the rights of everyone else, but they don't like it when it hits home."not in my backyard" is rampant 
    We’re like the piggy bank that everybody is robbing, and that ends President Trump
  • gandrfabgandrfab Posts: 20,965 AG
    dave44 said:
    Scminnow said:
    https://m.phys.org/news/2019-08-scientists-hydrogen-gas-oil-bitumen.html

    Scientists have developed a large-scale economical method to extract hydrogen (H2) from oil sands (natural bitumen) and oil fields. This can be used to power hydrogen-powered vehicles, which are already marketed in some countries, as well as to generate electricity; hydrogen is regarded as an efficient transport fuel, similar to petrol and diesel, but with no pollution problems. The process can extract hydrogen from existing oil sands reservoirs, with huge existing supplies found in Canada and Venezuela. Interestingly, this process can be applied to mainstream oil fields, causing them to produce hydrogen instead of oil.

    Hydrogen powered vehicles, including cars, buses, and trains, have been in development for many years. These vehicles have been acknowledged to be efficient, but the high price of extracting the Hydrogen from oil reserves has meant that the technology has not been economically viable. Now a group of Canadian engineers have developed a cheap method of extracting H2 from oil sands. They are presenting this work at the Goldschmidt Geochemistry Conference in Barcelona.

    "There are vast oil sand reservoirs in several countries, with huge fields in Alberta in Canada, but also in Venezuela and other countries" said Dr. Ian Gates, of the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Calgary, and of Proton Technologies Inc.).

    Oil fields, even abandoned oil fields, still contain significant amounts of oil. The researchers have found that injecting oxygen into the fields raises the temperature and liberates H2, which can them be separated from other gases via specialist filters. Hydrogen is not pre-existing in the reservoirs, but pumping oxygen means that the reaction to form hydrogen can take place.

    "This technique can draw up huge quantities of hydrogen while leaving the carbon in the ground. When working at production level, we anticipate we will be able to use the existing infrastructure and distribution chains to produce H2 for between 10 and 50 cents per kilo. This means it potentially costs a fraction of gasoline for equivalent output". This compares with current H2 production costs of around $2/kilo. Around 5% of the H2 produced then powers the oxygen production plant, so the system more than pays for itself.

    this is more promising than wind farms
    I agree, but I keep thinking” Hindenburg “ for some reason?


    The auto-ignition temperature of a substance is the lowest temperature at which it will spontaneously ignite without the presence of a flame or spark.


    Hydrogen Compared with Other Fuels

    Like gasoline or natural gas, hydrogen is a fuel that must be handled properly. It can be used as safely as other common fuels when simple guidelines are followed.

    https://h2tools.org/bestpractices/hydrogen-compared-other-fuels
    Gestapo 

  • surfmansurfman WC FLPosts: 5,981 Admiral
    Any one of those will make a heck of a loud bang. I think we will have petroleum based energy for many many years. There is way too much invested in it. However, there certainly is nothing wrong wit trying to find new and better ways to make energy. I looked into a wind mill for my house about 10 years ago and it was a ridiculous option. I'm not sure it is really practical for a home owner, even solar was not worth the investment then but, things are getting better, look for more solar panels on roof tops, I do not want batteries in my house though.
    Tight Lines, Steve
    My posts are my opinion only.

    Be thankful we're not getting all the government we're paying for.  Will Rogers
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