Solar and Wind Wholesale Grid Parity – Are We There Yet?
In the past year, the solar and wind industries have reported power purchase agreement pricing as low as levelized $45 and $30 per megawatt hour, respectively. At these prices, renewable energy can be considered competitive with conventional power generation, although only in certain locations with good resources.
The costs of utility-scale solar power installations have dropped by more than 50 percent in the last five years and the industry has enjoyed the benefits of a 30 percent federal investment tax credit (ITC), which is set to drop to 10 percent after 2016. Wind energy costs have also declined, and projects have benefitted from a federal production tax credit (PTC) which has now expired but could be renewed by Congress.