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Sunshine Might Be Free But Solar Power is Not Cheap


Geee
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Real Clear Policy

Mississippi residents are consistently told that renewable energy sources, like solar panels, are now the lowest-cost ways to generate electricity, but these claims are based on creative accounting gimmicks that only examine a small portion of the expenses incurred to integrate solar onto the grid while excluding many others.

When these hidden expenses are accounted for, it becomes obvious that solar is much more expensive than Mississippi’s existing coal, natural gas, and nuclear power plants and that adding more solar will increase electricity prices for the families and businesses that rely upon it. One of the most common ways of estimating the cost of generating electricity from different types of power plants is a metric called the Levelized Cost of Energy, or LCOE.

 

The LCOE is an estimate of the long-term average cost of producing electricity from a power plant. These values are estimated by taking the costs of the plant, such as the money needed to build and operate it, fuel costs, and the cost to borrow money, and dividing them by the amount of electricity generated by the plant (generally megawatt hours) over its useful lifetime.

In other words, LCOE estimates are essentially like calculating the cost of your car on a per-mile-driven basis after accounting for expenses like initial capital investment, loan and insurance payments, fuel costs, and maintenance.

We can estimate the LCOE of new solar facilities in Mississippi by using overnight capital cost estimates from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) Electricity Market Module and other state-specific factors. We can then compare the cost of solar to the real-world cost data for the coal and natural gas generators at the Victor J. Daniel Jr. Generating Plant, and the Grand Gulf nuclear power plant using the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Form 1 database.

:snip:

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@Geee

Sunshine Might Be Free But Solar Power is Not Cheap

Not to mention These 

clouds-overcast-day-sky-cloudy-103789363

 

e8mkgp.jpg?crop=1:1,smart&width=1200&hei

 

1. They Do interfere with solar energy

2. The Damn things are everywhere!

 

 

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Solar Performance and Efficiency | Department of Energy

:snip:

  • Temperature—Solar cells generally work best at low temperatures. Higher temperatures cause the semiconductor properties to shift, resulting in a slight increase in current, but a much larger decrease in voltage. Extreme increases in temperature can also damage the cell and other module materials, leading to shorter operating lifetimes. Since much of the sunlight shining on cells becomes heat, proper thermal management improves both efficiency and lifetime.

:snip:

Hmmm . . sounds like something to consider when planning for power sources in southern states (it never gets hot there, right?)

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20 minutes ago, SDwaters said:

Solar Performance and Efficiency | Department of Energy

:snip:

  • Temperature—Solar cells generally work best at low temperatures. Higher temperatures cause the semiconductor properties to shift, resulting in a slight increase in current, but a much larger decrease in voltage. Extreme increases in temperature can also damage the cell and other module materials, leading to shorter operating lifetimes. Since much of the sunlight shining on cells becomes heat, proper thermal management improves both efficiency and lifetime.

:snip:

Hmmm . . sounds like something to consider when planning for power sources in southern states (it never gets hot there, right?)

1l-image-37.jpg

The 550MW Desert Sunlight photovoltaic (PV) solar farm is located six miles north of the rural community of Desert Center, Riverside County, California. It is built on approximately 4,100 acres of land managed by the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

 

Ya mean like this?

Then there is the "Small"  problem of disposing of them.

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4 hours ago, Valin said:

1l-image-37.jpg

The 550MW Desert Sunlight photovoltaic (PV) solar farm is located six miles north of the rural community of Desert Center, Riverside County, California. It is built on approximately 4,100 acres of land managed by the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

 

Ya mean like this?

Then there is the "Small"  problem of disposing of them.

And in dusty conditions they have to be kept clean to maintain optimal output.

  • Haha 2
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