Guest essay by Eric Worrall
According to Forbes the Eland solar project is the end of the line for fossil fuel. Except at night, or when clouds cover the sky, or when the batteries run flat.
New Solar + Battery Price Crushes Fossil Fuels, Buries Nuclear
Jeff McMahon Senior Contributor
Jul 1, 2019, 12:03am
Los Angeles Power and Water officials have struck a deal on the largest and cheapest solar + battery-storage project in the world, at prices that leave fossil fuels in the dust and may relegate nuclear power to the dustbin.
Later this month the LA Board of Water and Power Commissioners is expected to approve a 25-year contract that will serve 7 percent of the city’s electricity demand at 1.997¢/kwh for solar energy and 1.3¢ for power from batteries.
“This is the lowest solar-photovoltaic price in the United States,” said James Barner, the agency’s manager for strategic initiatives, “and it is the largest and lowest-cost solar and high-capacity battery-storage project in the U.S. and we believe in the world today. So this is, I believe, truly revolutionary in the industry.”
The Eland Project will not rid Los Angeles of natural gas, however. The city will still depend on gas and hydro to supply its overnight power. But the batteries in this 400-megawatt project will take a bite out of the fossil share of LA’s power pie.
“It reduces the evening ramp (of natural gas) as the sun sets,” Barner told commissioners at their June 18 meeting. “As the sun goes down for our other 1,000 MW of solar that doesn’t have batteries, the gas-fired generation and hydro have to compensate for that. So that net peak load in the evening will be offset with this facility. We’ll be able to contribute to that and keep gas powered generation not running at the full amount.”
Crudely, Los Angeles can count on solar power generation from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., said Louis Ting, director of power planning development at the agency. The batteries in this project effectively extend that horizon four hours, to 11 p.m.
…Read more: https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffmcmahon/2019/07/01/new-solar–battery-price-crushes-fossil-fuels-buries-nuclear/
What terrific news. The low cost of this new plant creates an irresistible economic case for moving to solar energy, completely eliminating the need for the Paris Agreement, government renewable incentives and coercive carbon taxes.
I’m sure you’ll all join me in congratulating climate leader Los Angeles for transforming the future of global energy.
Update (EW): Some cynical comments appearing. Surely you guys don’t think Los Angeles is somehow LYING about their solar breakthrough? 😉