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Batteries at Parity With Baseload Coal, Gas and Nuclear

Tesla’s 80MW PowerPack substation in Mira Loma, California. Image from Tesla

Bloomberg NEF – Battery Power’s Latest Plunge in Costs Threatens Coal, Gas

March 26, 2019

It’s happened, decades ahead of schedule. Lithium-ion batteries are at parity with baseload coal, gas and nuclear.  Those new gigabattery factories are responsible. it’s amazing what giga scaling can do to costs. 

The latest cost plummet was 35 percent since mid 2018 – wow! Part of the reason that batteries are now at parity with the cheapest fossil fuels is the continuing plummet of wind and solar costs, falling 10 and 18 percent in just the last year. 

Since 2010, onshore wind, solar PV and offshore wind have fallen by 49, 84 and 56 percent. Lithium-ion battery storage has dropped by 76% since 2012.

Here’s the money shot from Bloomberg NEF, “Batteries co-located with solar or wind projects are starting to compete, in many markets and without subsidy, with coal- and gas-fired generation for the provision of ‘dispatchable power’ that can be delivered whenever the grid needs it (as opposed to only when the wind is blowing, or the sun is shining).”

The Big Picture:

Don’t let your guard down. Among other things such as president Whatshisname, clean energy cannot save us alone. All man-caused greenhouse gas emissions from energy, agriculture, forests and transportation only amount to two percent of the warming we are already experiencing across the planet every year. We must restore our atmospheric CO2 concentration back to the natural levels that our advanced civilization evolved with, or things will not work out well.