Slowing down the transition from fossil fuels to green energy could push up electricity costs across the United States. This is one of the conclusions of a recent study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).
The NREL study shows that restricting renewable energy expansion to a 20 percent share of the grid would cause system-wide costs to rise by more than 5 percent. According to this study, the most cost-effective share for renewables was 54 percent of the power grid’s electricity mix.
These researchers used several projections to analyze different cost scenarios for renewables. Their low-cost scenario allowed the most cost-effective share of renewable power generation to rise to 68 percent. If the cost of renewables remains high, researchers said the most cost-effective share would be 42 percent. Factors influencing green electricity costs include technological developments and the expense to build grid infrastructure.