Cheap Renewable Energy Overtaking Coal

It is more feasible than ever for citizens and the nation to turn to renewable energy resources and green energy-sourced electricity plans. Coal facilities around the world are becoming unprofitable and their contribution to fossil-sourced electricity generation is coming to an end.

The importance of ridding the electric grid of fossil-sourced electricity from coal, natural gas and oil, is evident in this infographic on C02 emission equivalencies. And here are 10 painless ways to give your kids a C02 emissions-free planet and save money doing it. The Texas Smart Meter site can provide your historic energy usage to help you understand your carbon output.

Energy analysts state that the United States can save $78 billion by closing coal plants in line with the Paris Climate Accord’s climate goals. Across the U.S., it has been estimated that the cost to build new wind and solar electricity generation facilities has fallen below that of running existing power plants generating energy through coal.

According to Lazard’s annual Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) reports, the cost of solar photovoltaic (PV) and energy wind generation has dropped 88% since 2009. Even without current government subsidies, the cost of renewable energy is considerably lower than conventional energy technologies.

The decline in the cost of clean energy generation will continue to fall in coming years. Solar PV costs will decline by 60% by 2050 according to the National Energy Laboratory projects, assuming continued industry growth. The onshore wind analysis forecasts suggest a 30% cost decline by 2050.

Renewable energy’s competitiveness steadily improving

According to the reports of Lazard’s, it is clear that generation costs for onshore wind and utility-scale solar energy will become cheaper than fossil fuels. LCOE reviewed various technologies on an apples-to-apples basis and compared them by evaluating their total costs to build and operate.

Currently, onshore wind generation costs between $29 and $56 per megawatt-hour (MWh) to build without subsidies. It costs $14 to $47 per megawatt-hour to build with current subsidies. In the case of new utility solar PV, it costs $36 to $44/MWh to build without subsidies and $32-$42/MWh with subsidies. In contrast, the existing power plants cost $27 to $45/MWh for coal and $24 to $31/MWh for nuclear energy.

The coal plant estimates do not take into account the enormous cost of climate change disasters, such as property damage and loss of human and animal lives, and the health effects of air pollution. Researchers have produced tools to quantify the average regional increases in life expectancy in relation to the presence of pollutants in an area; for example, pollutants can cause an average loss of on  year of life in some counties.

Check out a sampling of the low-cost green energy rates of Gexa, Green Mountain and Pulse Power you’ll find on Home Energy Club.

Renewable Energy Rates and Plans in Texas

Average Monthly Usage
Gexa Saver Freedom 36 17.7¢ 17.4¢ 17.2¢ 36 Months Fixed $295.00 100%
Gexa Superb Saver 24 25.9¢ 22.1¢ 15.2¢ 24 Months Fixed $295.00 100%
Gexa Energy Saver 24 17.9¢ 17.6¢ 17.4¢ 24 Months Fixed $295.00 100%
Gexa Energy Saver 36 17.2¢ 16.9¢ 16.7¢ 36 Months Fixed $295.00 100%
Gexa Saver 12 24.5¢ 14.6¢ 19.2¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Saver Deluxe 12 24.8¢ 14.4¢ 19.3¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Saver Premium 12 20.5¢ 20.1¢ 15¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Saver Deluxe 24 23.3¢ 12.9¢ 17.8¢ 24 Months Fixed $295.00 100%
Gexa Superb Saver 12 26.2¢ 22.3¢ 15.4¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Eco Saver Plus 12 25.7¢ 12.8¢ 18.9¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Saver Value 12 15.4¢ 17.1¢ 21.9¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Texas Green 36 15.9¢ 15.4¢ 15.1¢ 36 Months Fixed $20 100%
Texas Green 24 16.4¢ 15.9¢ 15.6¢ 24 Months Fixed $20 100%
Texas Green 12 17.5¢ 17¢ 16.7¢ 12 Months Fixed $20 100%
Free Energy Weekends 36 16.4¢ 16¢ 15.9¢ 36 Months TimeOfUse $125 21%
Free Energy Nights 36 16.3¢ 16¢ 15.8¢ 36 Months TimeOfUse $125 21%
Texas Fixed 36 15.5¢ 15¢ 14.7¢ 36 Months Fixed $20 21%
Free Energy Weekends 24 18.1¢ 17.8¢ 17.6¢ 24 Months TimeOfUse $125 21%
Texas Fixed 12 17.1¢ 16.6¢ 16.3¢ 12 Months Fixed $20 21%
Free Energy Nights 24 18.1¢ 17.7¢ 17.5¢ 24 Months TimeOfUse $125 21%
Texas Fixed 24 16¢ 15.5¢ 15.2¢ 24 Months Fixed $20 21%
Free Energy Weekends 12 21.5¢ 21.2¢ 21¢ 12 Months TimeOfUse $125 21%
Free Energy Nights 12 21.5¢ 21.2¢ 21¢ 12 Months TimeOfUse $125 21%
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Cost declines driven by R&D and deployment of utility-scale facilities

Renewable energy costs have steadily declined due to research and development (R&D), though a recent study at MIT found that over time, R&D becomes a less important factor than economies of scale and operational learning. However, R&D is of utmost importance in the early stages of technology, and technologies require continued funding to successfully transfer to the commercial market.

The  success rate  for coal and nuclear energy plants will be considerably lower in coming years. In 2018, the U.S set the record of 15.4 GW for coal plant closures, and in 2024 closures are expected to reach 24.1 GW. The U.S Energy Information Administration projects a 65 GW decline through 2030.

Lower costs mean lower consumer prices and mass adoption

In the coming years, electricity from utility-scale solar and wind facilities will sell at declining prices, creating grid parity pricing and mass adoption of renewable energy plans. On the other hand, coal production will become more and more uneconomic in comparison to renewable energy production. If the costs of climate change are considered, the cost of coal will be. The cost of stranded assets is expected to reach $78 billion in the U.S. by 2030.

The Oil & Gas industry is transitioning to a future based on renewable energy with major investments in green energy generation. As cities, states and businesses require the use of renewable electricity in their purchase requirements to meet clean energy targets, pressure is building for the transition to occur sooner than later.  For example, the Washington D.C. City Council voted to require 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2032, and there seems to be another city every day making such an announcement.

Learn about our green energy solution to climate change. Get promo codes for Texas electric companies specializing in green energy, such as Gexa Energy and Chariot Energy, and other energy providers offering low electricity rates on green energy plans.