Cost of new generation: comparison of different types - 2016
It can be tricky to compare different forms of energy generation as they have different construction, fuel, and operating costs as well as different operating life-spans. Fortunately this problem is addressed by 'Levelised Costs'. The Levelised Cost of Electricity (LCOE) is often cited as a convenient summary measure of the overall competitiveness of different generating technologies. This is because it represents the per-kilowatt hour cost (in real dollars) of building and operating a generating plant over an assumed financial life and duty cycle.
Numerous entities use this metric and, in the interests of balance, we have employed data from the US Energy Information Administration (US EIA) which annually produces an LCOE analysis for all the main generation types. That analysis is summarised in the following.
It is of note that the US EIA 'base case' analysis assumes unit costs for wind ($58.5) given an average wind capacity factor of 40 percent. However Saskatchewan has a world-class wind resource and capacity factors in excess of 40 percent are possible in multiple locations across the Province.