The findings presented here show quite clearly that states with high volumes of wind and solar PV have seen well below average cost increases. When this fact is considered in conjunction with the various health, environmental, energy security, and job creation benefits of renewable forms of generation, it helps to form a compelling argument in their favor. The next time someone tells you that they would support renewable energy if the costs weren’t so high, share these findings with them and see if their perspective changes.
The top five states were chosen because they accounted for over 50% of installed wind and solar PV volume by the end of 2010. On average, rates in these states increased by 1.35¢/kWh over five years (or 3.2% annually). The bottom five states were the only states to have each installed less than 1 MW of cumulative solar PV and wind capacity through 2010. On average, rates in these states increased by 1.39¢/kWh over five years (or 4.0% annually). On average across the U.S., by comparison, electricity prices increased by 1.8¢/kWh over five years (or 4.1% annually).
Brennan Lou, in a RenewableEnergyWorld.Com re-post
The health, environmental, and direct job creation benefits of renewable energy vs. traditional forms of power generation are widely accepted. All other things being equal, it would be a foregone conclusion that renewable energy should be chosen over other types of generation. Of course, all other things are not equal. To understand the total impact of integrating renewables into an electricity supply mix, the value of any benefits must be carefully weighed against the costs that may arise from choosing renewables.