Wind Energy Cheapest Form of Power, According to Denmark
According to the government of Denmark’s energy agency, onshore wind power is the cheapest form of new electricity generation. This puts it ahead of both renewable and non-renewable sources, including biomass, coal, and solar power.
The Danish Energy Agency found that onshore wind plants coming online in 2016 will cost around $.05 per kilowatt hour.
While offshore wind remained highly cost-effective, onshore wind still has it beat. Also close in cost are centralized coal, natural gas, and decentralized combined heat and power plants.
Large dedicated biomass plants and converted biomass power stations were found to be the most expensive, with an operation cost of $.15 per kWh.
Even in a scenario where interest rates increased to 10 percent, onshore wind would still be the cheapest. The analysis, the DEA emphasized, was not based on a complete and comprehensive cost-benefit analysis including an assessment of taxes, subsidies, and environmental benefits.
Denmark has been a big investor in wind power for decades—since around the 1970s—and has benefitted from the falling costs. Now, it hosts several big renewable energy companies such as Siemens and Vestas.
Denmark also has highly aggressive renewable energy targets for the near future and wind energy is helping them achieve those targets. In January of this year, the country reported that 54.8 percent of its energy comes from wind power.
Danish Minister for Energy, Climate, and Buildings Rasmus Petersen was pleased to see that Denmark’s renewable energy investments were paying off.
"Wind power today is cheaper than other forms of energy, not least because of a big commitment and professionalism in the field," Petersen said. "This is true both for researchers, companies and politicians. We need a long-term and stable energy policy to ensure that renewable energy, both today and in the future is the obvious choice."
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