Transition to Renewable Power
In New Zealand around 85% power electricity this generated renewable, mostly through hydroelectric but also including geothermal and wind power. New Zealand is a lucky country in this respect, but it could do even better by installing mass of storage batteries that will pick up the slack it is otherwise filled by call and natural gas generation.
Other countries are not nearly so lucky, and in Australia for example only 17% of all the electric power is generated renewably. The remaining 83% is generated mostly by coal and buy some natural gas.
Australia is naturally a very sunny and hot country, and in some parts of Australia up to a third of households have installed solar panels on their roofs, and they have done this purely for economic reasons because it’s save them a lot of money over the long term by cutting down their peak electricity usage which is the major cost component and there Power bill. The solar market across Australia is growing massively, and although a number of politicians have a vested interest in making certain that fossil fuels stay in the mix for a very long time, they cannot stop the development of solar because it is so popular amongst the population at large.
The cost of solar power has been decreasing exponentially for decades, and ominously for the coal industry is now priced lower over its lifetime for a utility scale power plant then the equivalent coal fired power plant. In South Australia the state government has signed a contract with Tesla for the supply of a massive storage battery that will store the solar and wind power generated during the day and make this available for overnight yes. This storage battery will replace a gas fired peaking plant, and will consist of a large number of white cabinets installed innocuously in a convenient Outdoors location, and Tesla has contracted to have the battery up and running within 100 days or the State government gets their money back.
This one project is having a seismic impact on the utility power generation market around the world, as politicians and utility companies waking up to the fact that solar and wind power plus battery storage it’s cheaper then it’s coal and gas fired equivalent, is much quicker to install, and has zero negative impact on the environment including no carbon emissions. Australia has vast areas of land available for solar power, and has a very reliable source of sunny days, and solar coupled with battery storage will grow explosively over the next decade or so.
The South Australia battery project will see and a very ominous signal to the coal and Gas Industry, and investors in these Industries we’ll see very clearly that the future is bleak, and as a result investment for expansion will dry up.