Solar And Wind Will Be Cheaper Than Nukes By End of Decade: Greenpeace

New report shows nuclear-dependent France has historic opportunity, and enormous financial incentive, to move towards renewables.
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    A Greenpeace campaigner holds a banner atop a building at the Fessenheim Nuclear Power Plant in France earlier this year. (Credit: flickr / Greenpeace France)

    A Greenpeace campaigner holds a banner atop a building at the Fessenheim Nuclear Power Plant in France earlier this year. (Credit: flickr / Greenpeace France)

    A new report by Greenpeace in France shows that renewable energy sources like photovoltaic solar and wind will be more affordable than nuclear power by the end of the decade.

    As France rushes to make expensive upgrades to its aging nuclear plants in the midst of the ongoing Fuksuhima disaster in Japan, the report (published here in French) shows that maintaining the nation’s dependence on atomic energy no longer makes financial sense.

    According to Reuters, the Greenpace study comes a week before French Energy Minister Segolene Royal “presents the broad lines of a much-delayed framework energy law that aims to spell out how France will cut the share of atomic energy to 50 percent from the current 75 percent by 2025.”

    As the solar energy industry website PVTech reports:

    Nuclear upgrades under new European Pressurised Reactor (EPR) standards would push nuclear prices to €133 per MWh (US$180 MWh), with €4.4 billion (US$6.0 billion) of investment per reactor required.

    Increasing the costs and financial risk of EPRs are operating costs, wall investment, improving safety and erosion of profitability, the report claimed.

    Compared to renewables nuclear will be more expensive than onshore wind (at €40-80 per MWh by 2018), and more expensive than solar and offshore wind power by 2020.

    The report urges government to take control of nuclear power, future nuclear generation, and the financial future of the country.

     

    This article was originally published on Common Dreams.

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      • OHDisqusNSA666100

        Cheaper than too cheap to meter.
        What conservative free market respecting nuclear industry enthusiast could possibly have a deep ingrained ideological bias against something EVEN cheaper than too cheap to meter.

      • floridanativee

        If it is found on a leftist blog on the internet, it must be true. This article is short on facts. Germany has given up on wind and solar due to ratepayer revolt and is back to building coal fired power plants. When they are cheaper, the free market will take over. Until then, all attempts to overpower the market will fail.

        • Nicko Thime

          The article is about NUCLEAR power, are you illiterate or just have an ideological drum to beat?

          • floridanativee

            You may want to go back and read the title of the article. Hint, it is at the top of the page in large black block letters.

            • Nicko Thime

              BIG block letters
              “Solar And Wind Will Be Cheaper Than Nukes”

              NUKES!! Not coal.

              First sentence
              “A new report by Greenpeace in France shows that renewable energy sources like photovoltaic solar and wind will be more affordable than nuclear power”
              NUCLEAR power, not coal.

              In fact, the word coal does not appear in the article.
              YOU have a very obvious agenda and no reading comprehension.

              • floridanativee

                Do you not realize that Germany is going away from nuclear and replacing it with coal, not wind and solar? Has that fact escaped you? Wind and solar are unreliable and will never be an acceptable form of electrical generation. They may augment fossil fuels when the conditions are right. There are commercially available wind and solar for you. How much do you have on your trailer?

                • Monster

                  WRONG! Wind is EXPANDING while solar, which never made much sense, is being abandoned.

                  • floridanativee

                    Just today, I heard the president of the United States, leader of the free world say that solar was the future and those who doubted it thought the moon was made of cheese. Is that you? Can you name one US wind installation that is competitive with natural gas? I mean all in with no subsidies. What kind of wind turbine do you have for your home. Lots of personal ones out there. I can get you the information. If it is good enough for rate payers and taxpayers, it should be good enough for you. Don’t take the subsidies though.

                    • Kevin Schmidt

                      Why do you have to get personal? It just makes you look foolish.
                      What kind of nuclear or coal plant do you have in your home?

                    • OHDisqusNSA666100

                      Oh, subsidies are terrible. All of a sudden.
                      Nations that don’t subsidize get left behind. You know that. Nuclear. See?

                      http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/senate-democrats-push-to-end-tax-breaks-for-big-oil-companies-to-cut-deficit/2011/05/10/AFiL42hG_story.html

                    • Monster

                      Solar is the future of the U.S. We could have 19,000 terawatt hours per year for about 300 billion…or this year’s Iraq war debt expenses.
                      Solar makes no sense in Germany, too much cloud cover.
                      Makes GREAT sense in Minnesota with 270 sun-majority days per year!!
                      MAYBE even makes sense in Ohio.

                  • Kevin Schmidt

                    Don’t you mean nuclear and coal are being abandoned in favor of solar and wind?

                  • OHDisqusNSA666100

                    You claim that solar is being abandoned because it never made sense.
                    My god.
                    You’re worse than the other guy.
                    You’re right about wind power expanding, but who isn’t.

                    • Monster

                      Solar doesn’t make sense…IN GERMANY with only 138 Sun-majority days per average year.
                      Maybe I needed to fill that in.

                • Nicko Thime

                  You told me to read the title.
                  I did.
                  You DIDN’T.

                  • floridanativee

                    You mean it doesn’t say that wind and solar will be cheaper than nukes? The feds estimate that wind and solar will be all the way up to 10% by the year 2030. BFD, So you didn’t tell us how much wind and solar you have on your trailer. Does that mean you have none? Come clean on that.

                    • Kevin Schmidt

                      What does his trailer have to with anything besides nothing? Stop being an ass.

                      • floridanativee

                        The poster wants ratepayers and taxpayers to pay dearly to subsidize wind and solar, He is all for it, but is unwilling to spend anything for it himself. You don’t see the irony in that. Stop being a dumb ass.

                • Kevin Schmidt

                  Do you realize the only reason why Germany is building those coal plants is because they have been in the works for a long time. Once these coal plants are built, Germany will not build any new ones, ever.
                  Of course wind and solar ARE reliable AND cheaper than nuclear and coal, which is why the entire planet is transitioning to alternative energy. Once cheap batteries come online in the next five years, nuclear and fossil fuels industries will go out of business.

                  • floridanativee

                    DUH, they stopped building coal fired power plants and were going to rely on nuclear, wind and solar. There have been many days with zero percent of alternative energy being produced. How can you claim they ARE reliable? Nobody thinks that. Some times the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine. Energy storage is even more expensive that energy production. Just what alternative energy do you have on your home assuming you are on the planet. The US which is the largest energy user and producer on that same planet gets only 3.5% from wind and solar and is projected to be at 10% by 2030. Speaking of places where the sun doesn’t shine, where is your head,

                    • Monster

                      Never. Any day without wind has plenty of sun. Vice versa. Complete lie

                    • Kevin Schmidt

                      Can you provide the proof for your ridiculous claim of, “There have been many days with zero percent of alternative energy being produced”?
                      No?
                      Thought so!

                      • floridanativee
                        • Kevin Schmidt

                          Apparently you are unaware of this:

                          Germany Sets New Record, Generating 74 Percent Of Power Needs From Renewable Energy

                          In the first quarter of 2014, renewable energy sources met a record 27 percent of the country’s electricity demand, thanks to additional installations and favorable weather. “Renewable generators produced 40.2 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity, up from 35.7 billion kilowatt-hours in the same period last year,” Bloomberg reported.

                          Observers say the records will keep coming as Germany continues its Energiewende, or energy transformation, which aims to power the country almost entirely on renewable sources by 2050.

                          …a recent analysis by the consulting firm Eclareon found that solar power has reached grid parity in Germany, meaning once all of the costs are accounted for, the price of commercial solar power is now equal to retail electricity rates.

                          The modest uptick in coal-fired generation was substituting for pricier natural gas, not representative of a return to coal as it’s often mischaracterized. In fact, last December, as renewable energy production continued to grow and energy demand shrank, Germany’s largest utility chose not to renew two long-term contracts for coal-fired power.

                          And while much is made of rising industrial electricity prices, Lovins points out that in fact, “giant German firms enjoy Germany’s low and falling wholesale electricity prices, getting the benefit of renewables’ near-zero operating cost but exempted from paying for them.”

                          And as for the impact on the consumer, “the FIT surcharge raised households’ retail price of electricity seven percent but renewables lowered big industries’ wholesale price 18 percent. As long-term contracts expire, the past few years’ sharply lower wholesale prices could finally reach retail customers and start sending households’ total electricity prices back down.”

                          http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/05/13/3436923/germany-energy-records/

                        • floridanativee

                          I am aware that they did that on one day. one day. They were 23% for the quarter. Libtard blogs like think progress keep repeating it so the dumb masses like you will keep repeating it. Germany now has six (6) new large coal plants under construction. The rate payers have revolted. Try using current information. I posted 2 real article that you obviously were not interested in. The verbiage from your liberal blog is totally wrong. The world knows it, but you seem happy in your ignorance. Try keeping up.

                        • Kevin Schmidt

                          You project your own blissful ignorance and inability to keep up. Everyone in this thread is proving you wrong.

                        • floridanativee

                          A collective of idiots is limited by the smartest of the bunch. With just a little looking around you could know a lot about German alternative failures. By the way, a little quest for you. How fast must the wind be blowing before a wind turbine produces any energy and what % of the time in German (on average) is the wind below that threshold? I will not get into solar power and night as it would be confusing;.

                • OHDisqusNSA666100

                  Wind and solar will never be acceptable?
                  You big free market guy?
                  My god.

        • Monster

          Another lie. Germany is EXPANDING wind and contracting solar, having recognized that the right wing fuel salesmen are full of it.

        • OHDisqusNSA666100

          Right. Germany has given up.
          So, beginning with that deceptive claim, we should obviously conclude that the USA should give up too, instead of lead.

          • floridanativee

            Maybe for you, but I think throwing away money building huge demonstration projects of technology that will never compete with natural gas is stupid. The fact that most of these are built by the politically connected and have the environmentalist wackos protecting them makes it worse. Could anybody else get a pass for killing bald eagles for 30 years. Money should be spent on research. The free market has brought us marvelous technology today and subsidies just distort it. Our present course is guaranteed to fail and no sane person can say it is succeeding now.