Wind energy and solar power will be the cheapest form of power generation in every G20 country, including India, by the year 2030, a study today said. With the G20 summit underway in Hamburg today, the study carried out by Greenpeace Germany said in about half of the G20 countries, renewable energy has been cheaper or equal in price to electricity generated from dirty coal or hazardous nuclear power plants since 2015.
"Wind energy and solar power will be the cheapest form of power generation in every G20 country by the year 2030 at the latest," the study said. It said that India has made significant progress towards it target of 175 GW of renewable energy by 2022. Solar tariffs quoted in the latest bid for the Bhadla solar power project in Rajasthan fell to a record low of Rs 2.44 per unit and wind power tariffs also fell to a new low of Rs. 3.46 in the last auction, putting both technologies at or below the cost of electricity from new coal-fired or nuclear power plants.
"Any G20 country that is still investing in coal and nuclear power plants is wasting their money on technology that will not be competitive in coming years. "The G20 now has a responsibility to send a clear signal that accelerating the clean energy transition is not only the right thing to do for the climate, but also for the economy," said Ashish Fernandes, Greenpeace campaigner. The Finnish Lappeenranta University of Technology study, commissioned by Greenpeace, calculates the electricity generation costs in all G20 countries for the years 2015 and 2030.
The study found that wind farms already generate the cheapest form of electricity in 2015 in large parts of Europe, South America, the US, China and Australia. Due to rapid technical progress and falling price, in 2030 solar energy will be so cheap that it will be even cheaper than wind power in many G20 countries. "There can be no excuses anymore. Climate protection increasingly makes economic sense across the G20 as renewable energy becomes cheaper than dirty coal and nuclear," Greenpeace Germany energy expert Tobias Austrup said.
The body said US President Donald Trump, however, is "mistakenly" promoting coal and nuclear power. "Trumps energy policy is simply a bad deal. The US has excellent conditions for expanding its wind and solar energy capabilities and states like California, Texas or Iowa will not miss this chance," said Austrup added.