The cost of generating electricity

  1. I stumbled across what I thought an interesting comparison of the costs to generate electricity from the US Department of energy....includes transmission costs.

    Its shows the total cost per megawatt hour: the highest cost sources:

    "solar thermal" $312 what this is ?? heat or equivalent electricity?
    wind offshore: $243
    solar PV $211 solar photovoltaic cells

    while gas seems to offer the lowest cost at from $66 to $125.

    I am surprised that "advanced nuclear" at $114 is so competitive.

    It sure points out the heavy subsidies (taxpayer money) required for solar.

    Are subsidies available for offshore power?? Seems tough for it to compete otherwise!
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2011
  2. jcsd
  3. I thought coal was supposed to be the cheapest.
    What about the cost of hydro?
  4. jim hardy

    jim hardy 5,460
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    """solar thermal" $312 what this is ?? heat or equivalent electricity?""

    that should be the cost of the electricity made by focusing sun to boil water.

    hydro - my only experience is secondhand.
    in 1960's my father-in-law's plant in Niagara Falls bought hydro for 2 mils/kwh,
    or $2 per megawatt hour. seems incredible, today.

    old jim
  5. Hydro is included in the DOE chart...
    I just posted a couple of high and low cost categories.
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