All electricity needs can be met by solar, wind and battery energy by 2030

All electricity needs can be met by solar, wind and battery energy by 2030

By 2030, all-solar, wind and battery (SWB) power systems could provide the cheapest electricity, supplying two to three times the amount of power available in the continental United States and other most populous regions of the world. This would lead to the bankruptcy of companies using coal, gas and nuclear fuel to generate electricity, and a sharp decrease in consumer costs. This assessment is contained in a new report by the think tank RethinkX.

The dramatic decline in the costs of clean energy production and storage technologies will lead to a rapid and inevitable change in the sector, analysts say. The SWB system will have a much higher capacity than the existing one, allowing the production of huge amounts of electricity at a cost approaching zero. This will create new business models and industries, as well as repatriate energy-intensive manufacturing to the United States.

Analysts believe that it is wrong to operate with the usual ideas, formed on the basis of previous experience in the production of electricity. As the fixed-line telephone network evolved into the Internet, the traditional power grid will be replaced by SWBs, larger, more flexible and more functional.

The experts looked at three power systems (California, Texas and New England) and showed that there is a fundamental trade-off between energy production and storage capacity, described by the “clean energy U-curve.” Optimizing this curve, the researchers found that 100% SWB systems are the cheapest option for new power plants, and in many cases even cheaper than the cost of operating existing fossil and nuclear power plants. Moreover, most of the time they will generate excess electricity. In California, for example, SWB’s 309 TWh output exceeds the current total demand of 285 TWh. Investment in the creation of a SWB system for the continental United States does not exceed $ 2 trillion in the period until 2030. The resulting average cost of generating electricity will be less than 3 cents per kWh, which is less than the average cost of continuing to operate an existing coal or gas fired power plant.

Analysts are confident that meeting 100% of electricity demand with SWB systems in the continental United States and most other densely populated regions of the world is physically and economically feasible by 2030.

Switching to SWB will eliminate virtually all greenhouse gas emissions from the existing power sector and further reduce emissions by eliminating the use of fossil fuels in the residential, commercial, industrial, transportation and agricultural sectors.

All electricity needs can be met by solar, wind and battery energy by 2030

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