Accessibility Links

Solar and wind to produce cheaper electricity than fossil fuels by 2020



Regular observers of the global energy industry are likely somewhat jaded at the oft-made claims that ‘renewables will kill oil and gas’, but a new report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) claims solar and wind really will produce cheaper electricity than fossil fuels by 2020, without subsidies.

The report Renewable Power Generation Costs in 2018, is based upon a comprehensive review of data from projects around the world and suggests that the cost advantage of renewables will continue to extend until it surpasses fossil fuels in 2020.
Solar and wind to produce cheaper electricity than fossil fuels by 2020
“Renewable power is the backbone of any development that aims to be sustainable,” says Francesco La Camera, IRENA’s Director-General. “We must do everything we can to accelerate renewables if we are to meet the climate objectives of the Paris Agreement. Today’s report sends a clear signal to the international community: Renewable energy provides countries with a low-cost climate solution that allows for scaling up action. To fully harness the economic opportunity of renewables, IRENA will work closely with our membership and key partners to facilitate on-the-ground solutions and concerted action will result in renewable energy projects.”

Admittedly a research report from a renewable energy industry body is hardly likely to contain withering critiques of the industry, but nevertheless the cost advantage of renewables over fossil fuels really does seem to be increasing. 

The costs for renewable energy technologies decreased to a record low last year. The global weighted-average cost of electricity from concentrating solar power (CSP) declined by 26%, bioenergy by 14%, solar photovoltaics (PV) and onshore wind by 13%, hydropower by 12% and geothermal and offshore wind by 1%, respectively.
By 2020, onshore wind and solar PV will be a less expensive source of new electricity than the cheapest fossil fuel alternative.
From a solar perspective, these developments appear to be Swanson’s law in action: the observation that the price of solar photovoltaic modules tends to drop 20 percent for every doubling of cumulative shipped volume.

IRENA’s report suggests that such cost reductions, especially for solar and wind power tech, are set to continue throughout the next decade. According to IRENA’s global database, over three-quarters of the onshore wind and four-fifths of the solar PV projects that are due to be commissioned next year will produce power at lower prices than the cheapest new coal, oil or natural gas options. Crucially, they are set to do so without financial assistance.

If IRENA’s database proves correct, this will be transformative- both for the fossil fuel and renewable industries and the technical and engineering professionals that work in them.

Looking for a job in the renewable power industry?

Then look no further! Fircroft recruits technical and engineering professionals for many of the world’s leading renewable power businesses. Register your CV / Resume for free today and we’ll alert you to the latest jobs that match your skills and experience as soon as they become available. You can also explore our current Renewable Power jobs here.
Recent Comments
Cordial greeting: I am a specialized bulldozer operator 1 D6 - D8 - D9 - D10 - D11 - VIBRO COMPACTED MINI LOADER AND PATA DE CABRA, I am passionate about my profession my objective is: to develop and carry out activities that allow my personal and professional growth to face new challenges in the workplace. I am characterized as responsible, honest, committed, certified in maintenance of heavy equipment and labor competence, with extensive experience in: sanitary landfills, exploitation of quarries in geographical heights, earthworks, construction in the road infrastructure, gas pipeline installation and oil, conformation of deposits among others, compatible health for work to 100%, ability to work outdoors in all weather conditions: cold and warm, human and interpersonal relationships, flexible, immediate availability to work and move to any city and country , I WANT AND I NEED TO WORK, willing to settle in this country, complete documentation. Current international vaccines. Mobile: +57 3207731508 - +57 3196108213
fredy alberto roldan garcia, 31 May 2019
Dear sir,          Here Taj ozair. having 4 yrs experience in various companies. Please if you have any opportunities let me know sir. This is my dream to work in solar and wind . Now I am in Doosan heavy industries and construction. Kuwait Project - Swro 60 MIGPD desalination plant. Client - Ministry of Kuwait. Qualification - in electrical power system.            So sir if you have any opportunities in this field please let me know.                      Thanks & Regards                         Taj ozair                           +96560334253
Taj ozair, 01 July 2019
Add new comment
By commenting on this blog you're agreeing to our terms of use

Comments left should relate to the subject of the above blog. Unfortunately job applications cannot be accepted here.

For job enquiries and applications please use our job search and for technical or account queries please contact us.
Solar and wind to produce cheaper electricity than fossil fuels by 2020 - Time to read 3 min
Share this article


Back to Top

By clicking "Save" you consent to
receiving matching jobs based on the
job/page you are viewing by email from
Fircroft, as detailed in our privacy policy
Fircroft would like to keep you up to date with our latest company updates via email. Occasionally Fircrofts marketing may contain 3rd party or affiliate information, however we will not share your personal data with any 3rd parties without your consent. From time to time, we might contact you to get your views on the service you have received. To help you get the best out of Fircroft, we may personalise them based on your location and how you use
Fircroft would like to keep you up to date with the latest company updates and vacancies via SMS / Text messages
Your consent options above means that Fircroft cannot contact you about any new or alternative career vacancies. If you want Fircroft to only contact you about the role(s) you have applied for please continue, however if you would like to be considered for other positions please allow us to contact you by changing one or more of the above consent.