By Sarah Lozanova
The average cost of electricity from wind and solar energy could drop by 26 to 59 percent, according to a new report released by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The report, entitled The Power to Change: Solar and Wind Cost Reduction Potential to 2025, finds policy framework and the regulatory environment to be key unknown factors in the future cost of electricity from wind and solar energy.
The report explores the global weighted average levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) of different forms of renewable energy today and in the near future. The LCOE of solar photovoltaic (PV) for example fell by 58 percent from 2010 to 2015, making it more competitive at the utility scale. The estimated LCOE in 2025 is expected to be a mere 6 cents per kilowatt-hour for solar PV and 5 cents for onshore wind energy.
Although concentrating solar power (CSP) and offshore wind energy are “in their deployment infancy,” falling costs have already made them attractive in some markets with an LCOE of 15 cents and 18 cents per kWh respectively, IRENA found.
Freelance renewable energy writer