Costs

Clean and renewable energy is already cost competitive with conventional energy resources in many markets. In just the last two years, prices for wind, solar and other technologies have fallen significantly, and biofuels have helped lower gas prices. Renewables are beginning to match or beat fossil-fueled electricity on price, and with continued growth, deployment and innovation, renewables are becoming more widespread every day.

Key Stats

  • $3.75: The amount of money saved by Michigan ratepayers for every $1.00 the states spends on energy efficiency programs. (Source: Upper Michigan Source, http://bit.ly/1v56Rnw)
  • $2.40: Amount of savings returned for every $1.00 spent on energy efficiency measures in Pennsylvania. (Source: Times-Tribune, http://bit.ly/1sgjeS3)
  • $230 billion: Amount saved on utility bills thanks to the federal Energy Star energy efficiency program. (Source: U.S. EPA, http://1.usa.gov/1kkP9yj)
  • 54 gigawatts: Amount of offshore wind energy the U.S. can add by 2030 without significantly raising electricity rates. (Source: The Brattle Group, http://bit.ly/1qOJ8bk)
  • 11%: Decline in the price of distributed photovoltaic solar installations in 2013. (Source: Interstate Renewable Energy Council, http://bit.ly/1nw4jek)
  • $500 million: Money saved by Massachusetts ratepayers thanks to the Green Communities Act. (Source: Boston Globe, http://bit.ly/1vXYPjM)
  • $1,000,000: Annual reduction of electricity bills for Fort Hays State University in Kansas, thanks to two wind turbines just off campus. (Source: KSNW, http://bit.ly/1uAs9Kn)
  • 70%: Percent of Americans that support EPA efforts to curb the carbon emissions of existing power plants. (Source: ABC News, http://abcn.ws/1nI93nX)
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Resources

A Survey of State-Level Cost and Benefit Estimates of Renewable Portfolio Standards

— Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, May 2014, http://1.usa.gov/1oXB8EV

Rhode Island Renewable Portfolio Standard Fact Sheet

— American Council On Renewable Energy, February 2014, http://bit.ly/1dqfXmt

The Social Cost of Carbon: Implications for Modernizing Our Electricity System

— Journal of Environmental Studies and Science, November 2013, http://bit.ly/16l996O

Why Are Residential PV Prices in Germany So Much Lower Than in the United States?

— Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, August 2013, http://1.usa.gov/148Ays3

Policy Brief: Platform on Industrial Energy Efficiency

— BlueGreen Alliance, August 2013, http://bit.ly/16QDewh

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Quotes

“Polysilicon is a grossly, grossly, grossly oversupplied commodity product. We’re staring at years of stability where polysilicon pricing sits at something approaching cost of production and doesn’t move.”

— Paul Leming, director of research at Ticonderoga Securities in New York, http://bloom.bg/tPoZN0

“But looking forward….solar panels on the roof will provide power more cheaply than taking power from the grid.”

— David Crane, CEO of the utility NRG, http://bit.ly/rxTt2a

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