Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Berkeley Lab, LBNL is situated in the state of California and constitutes a part of the University of California. LBNL is engaged in unclassified research. The number of employees amounts to about 4,000 people, including 800 students and about 20 staff of the Ministry, in addition, about 3,000 temporary researchers are involved annually.
The laboratory is known for a variety of achievements in science, including the discovery of 15 chemical elements. 11 employees of LBNL have won the Nobel Prize.
The new report by LBNL predicts that the wind power expenses will have decreased by 24-30% by 2030 and 35-41% by 2050.
The research, published in the Nature Energy journal, refers to the large-scale survey of 163 experts in the field of wind power.
“The society is aware that the transition to renewable energy sources should occur as soon as possible. And the earlier such technologies as energy from wind and sun become cheaper than coal and natural gas, the faster they can be accepted all over the world, not just in rich countries. Developing countries around the world are already paying attention to the competitive attractiveness of RES”, comments the author of the study Ryan Wiser on the report's findings. “Wind power expenses have dropped sharply in the recent years, which has led to a significant growth of its widespread deployment. But we would like to know about the prospects of further development of the technology and cost reductions, therefore we have conducted a study that complements other methods of assessment.”
In the US as of today, wind power generates about 5% of the electricity, and the wind intends to become the leading renewable energy source in a relatively short period of time. The US Department of Energy forecasts an increase of this share to 10% by 2020, to 20% by 2030 and to 35% by 2050.
The interviewed experts (from the International Energy Agency to the National Wind Energy Association) predict different decline in prices depending on the different types of wind turbines. Most of the respondents see the reason for the costs reduction in the increase of power of wind turbines, larger rotors and higher efficiency.
The study has found that the average installed capacity of land-based turbines in 2030 will be about 3.25 MW, while the average offshore turbine will three times as big and will reach up to 11 MW.
The report by LBNL can be found here:
FORECASTING WIND ENERGY COSTS & COST DRIVERS