Renewables are beating out coal on cost

Source: By Josh Siegel, Washington Examiner • Posted: Tuesday, June 22, 2021

More than half (62%) of the renewable power added in 2020 was cheaper than the lowest-cost fossil fuel option, according to a report released this morning by the International Renewable Energy Agency.

IRENA found the costs of renewable energy continues to rapidly decline. In the last decade, the cost of utility-scale solar has fallen 85%, onshore wind costs have declined 56%, and offshore wind costs have fallen 48%, the report says.

In many cases, IRENA says new renewable power is even cheaper than existing coal power, solidifying the case for retiring those power plants. IRENA finds that 61% of U.S. coal capacity costs more to operate than new renewable electricity. Replacing those existing coal plants with renewables would reduce U.S. emissions from coal by one-third, IRENA says.

“We are far beyond the tipping point of coal,” said Francesco La Camera, IRENA’s director general. “Following the latest commitment by G7 to net-zero and stop global coal funding abroad, it is now for G20 and emerging economies to match these measures