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“Milestone” Reached: Solar Beats Out Natural Gas in California

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In case you missed it, CleanTechnica has a post expanding on an item in Vote Solar which reports:[a] milestone in solar pricing has been met in California.” According to CleanTechnica:

Southern California Edison has selected 250 MW worth of solar bids from companies able to produce solar electricity for 20 years for less money annually than the 20 year levelized cost of energy of a combined-cycle natural gas turbine power plant.

That’s particularly impressive given the low prices of natural gas right now.  The way it works, according to CleanTechnica, is that “With a bidding process, SCE can save money by making renewable energy companies compete to offer the lowest price for supplying the utility some of its electricity through its Renewable Standard Contract.”  And, “This year, the solar bids are below the [Market Price Referent], meaning that they cost less than the annual cost of getting the same amount of electricity from natural gas over the same time period.”

So, the next time you hear the fossil fuel industry claiming that clean energy is not cost competitive with dirty energy, or that renewable energy standards don’t work, refer them to this “milestone” and see what they have to say for themselves. If nothing else, it should be amusing.