Brattle principal Peter Fox-Penner has authored a letter to the editor published in the November 20, 2015 issue of the Financial Times that discusses the significant cost advantages of utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) technologies.
Dr. Fox-Penner’s letter was written in response to an earlier Financial Times article, “Sunshine revolution: the age of solar power,” which examined the rapidly-growing movement of solar power technology worldwide. In his response, Dr. Fox-Penner argues that the role of utility-scale solar PV, which accounts for around 60 percent of the 20,000 MW of cumulative solar electric capacity operating in the U.S., should not be overlooked in shaping a clean energy future.
Dr. Fox-Penner also notes that carbon dioxide reductions per installed watt are twice as high with utility-scale compared to residential-scale solar PV, and that utility-scale energy is about half the cost per megawatt basis versus residential rooftop solar ($83/MWh for utility v. $167/MWh for residential).
Dr. Fox-Penner is a co-author of a July 2015 Brattle report that found utility-scale solar PV technology to be more cost effective than residential scale systems as a vehicle for achieving the economic and policy benefits associated with PV solar. The report was prepared for First Solar, with support from the Edison Electric Institute.