Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

U.S. Solar Prices More Than 60 Percent Ahead of Government's Cost-Competitive Goal

Business
U.S. Solar Prices More Than 60 Percent Ahead of Government's Cost-Competitive Goal

In just three years, the U.S. solar industry is more than 60 percent of the way to achieving what the Department of Energy (DOE) deems as "cost-competitive, utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) electricity."

The DOE launched its SunShot Initiative in 2011, partnering with industry groups, universities, local communities and federal laboratories to drive innovation and lower the cost of solar energy. The set target was $0.06 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) by 2020. The DOE reports that the average utility-scale PV project price dropped from about $0.21 per kWh in 2010 to $0.11 per kWh by the end of 2013.

By comparison, the Energy Information Administration says the average U.S. electricity price is about $0.12 per kWh.

Graphic credit: National Renewable Energy Lab

“In just the last few years, the U.S. has seen remarkable increases in clean and renewable energy—doubling the amount of energy that we produce from solar and wind and supporting a strong, competitive solar supply chain that employs American workers in every state,” said Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz. “To continue this growth and position the U.S. as a global leader in clean energy innovation, the Energy Department is helping to advance new technologies that further reduce costs, improve performance and support new jobs and businesses across the country.”

The DOE has also announced $25 million in new funding to further boost domestic solar manufacturing and the commercialization of PV technologies.

During President Barack Obama’s first term, the country more than doubled the generation of renewable sources, with installed solar capacity growing from 1.2 gigawatts in 2008 to an estimated 13 today.

Visit EcoWatch’s RENEWABLES page for more related news on this topic.

Columbia Basin pygmy rabbits. Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife

The wildfires that roared through Eastern Washington in September had a devastating impact on an extremely endangered species of rabbit.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A protestor in NYC holds up a sign that reads, "November Is Coming" on June 14, 2020 in reference to voting in the 2020 presidential election. Ira L. Black / Corbis / Getty Images

By Mark Hertsgaard

What follows are not candidate endorsements. Rather, this nonpartisan guide aims to inform voters' choices, help journalists decide what races to follow, and explore what the 2020 elections could portend for climate action in the United States in 2021 and beyond.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Activists fight a peat fire in Siberia in September. ALEXANDER NEMENOV / AFP via Getty Images

The wildfires that ignited in the Arctic this year started earlier and emitted more carbon dioxide than ever before.

Read More Show Less
A metapopulation project in South Africa has almost doubled the population of cheetahs in less than nine years. Ken Blum / Wikimedia Commons / CC by 3.0

By Tony Carnie

South Africa is home to around 1,300 of the world's roughly 7,100 remaining cheetahs. It's also the only country in the world with significant cheetah population growth, thanks largely to a nongovernmental conservation project that depends on careful and intensive human management of small, fenced-in cheetah populations. Because most of the reserves are privately funded and properly fenced, the animals benefit from higher levels of security than in the increasingly thinly funded state reserves.

Read More Show Less
A new super enzyme feeds on the type of plastic that water and soda bottles are made of, polyethylene terephthalate (PET). zoff-photo / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Scientists are on the brink of scaling up an enzyme that devours plastic. In the latest breakthrough, the enzyme degraded plastic bottles six times faster than previous research achieved, as The Guardian reported.

Read More Show Less

Support Ecowatch