Insights into LCOE – The Levelized Cost of Energy

Before our society can decide on a certain course for its energy policy, we need to ask ourselves a central question: What Does It Cost?

That’s exactly why industry analyst Mike Hess went to work recently, asking tough questions about land use, externalities, the safety of fracking, food and water shortages, climate change, transmission rights, smart-grid, efficiency, conservation, consumer incentives, carbon taxes, energy storage, health hazards, feed-in tariffs, subsidies – you name it.

To answer this one question that lies at the very core of the energy debate, Hess drew from dozens of different input feeds from industry and government. He’s brought it all together in a 32-page report called “Insights into LCOE – The Levelized Cost of Energy,” available here for $59.95.

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3 comments on “Insights into LCOE – The Levelized Cost of Energy
  1. {;ease read FREE —
    LCOE Quick Calculator

    Here, a free simple open source calculator is provided for finding the LCOE of a Solar PV system. The default scenario is for a system in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. The “assumptions and sources” section in the calculator gives guidelines on how to change inputs based on location.

    Download the calculator formatted for Microsoft Excel here:

    ECM032 – Solar PV LCOE.xls

    Download the calculator formatted for OpenOffice here:

    ECM032 – Solar PV LCOE – OO.ods

    Also housed at the For doing detailed calculations we recommend other free tools: RETScreen and NREL Solar Advisor Model (SAM) – for a full list of PV modeling tools see solar photovoltaic software. K. Branker, M.J.M. Pathak, J.M. Pearce, A Review of Solar Photovoltaic Levelized Cost of Electricity, Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 15, pp.4470-4482 (2011). DOI and Open aces
    A well documented ;ink. No need to invent the wheel and pay FEES!
    Levelised Cost of Electricity Literature Review
    Please give publicity to these FREE god documents. Making money should not be the motive of 2 Green Energy.

  2. Jim stACk says:

    This is a great way to understand the true cost of Energy. Renewables are the best over a life cycle cost but most people don’t know how to see the real value. This helps educate all of us on this important area.

  3. There are many excellent academic papers. Let me suggest my paper, “A Financial Worksheet for Computing the Cost (¢/kWh) of Solar Electricity Generated at Grid Connected Photovoltaic (PV) Generating Plants”, Journal of Solar Energy Engineering, August, 2002, Vol. 124, Page 319. This article was one of the top 10 articles downloaded from the JSEE in the following months: November, 2006; December, 2007; February, 2008; October, 2008. The cost here is the levelized cost of electricity (LCOE).

    This paper discusses the technical, financial, and economic principles underlying the levelized cost method of computing the cost of solar electricity. Topics include the levelized cost method, solar radiation, solar panel efficiency, depreciation, cost of capital, fixed and variable operating and maintenance costs, and taxes. The paper includes the worksheet, ‘‘Levelized Cost Worksheet for a 1 kW Solar Electric Generating Plant.’’ Its benchmark values are for a model solar plant located in Chicago, IL. The paper discusses these benchmark values as it analyzes the worksheet’s constants (capacity-1 kW, 8,760 hr/yr), independent variables (capital cost-$/kW, cost of capital-%, physical life-yr, standard sun hours, fixed and variable O & M expense), and dependent variables (capital amortization expense, capacity factor, cost of solar electricity).

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