Costs compared -- wind and thermal generation 2005

This graphic accompanies the main article "Nuclear Suddenly the Competitor to Beat" . The methodology explained: All generation prices start with installed cost. For gas and coal they also depend on fuel prices and for wind power on wind speeds. Coal, gas and wind prices are based on actual projects in 2005. Nuclear prices are based on what the industry believes it can build reactors for. The bottom of the price range for nuclear requires long term, low interest financial terms and is thus dependent on government largesse. Only realistic prices for wind are shown: low installed cost is unlikely to occur at a windy (remote) site with difficult access, while high installed cost is associated with windy remote sites, where the strong winds make them economic to build. Although offshore wind has priced itself out of the market for the time being, onshore wind is a strong competitor to gas and can be cheaper than coal on a good site. On the face of it, nuclear has become a tough competitor.

Methodology explained: All generation prices start with installed cost. For gas and coal they also depend on fuel prices and for wind power on wind speeds. Coal, gas and wind prices are based on actual projects in 2005. Nuclear prices are based on what the industry believes it can build reactors for. The bottom of the price range for nuclear requires long term, low interest financial terms and is thus dependent on government largesse. Only realistic prices for wind are shown: low installed cost is unlikely to occur at a windy (remote) site with difficult access, while high installed cost is associated with windy remote sites, where the strong winds make them economic to build. Although offshore wind prices are under pressure (and uncertain) for the time being, onshore wind is a strong competitor to gas and can be cheaper than coal on a good site. On the face of it, nuclear has become a tough competitor

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