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DG solar to put at risk USD 116bn of utility revenues in Europe, US

Power in California. Author: Jeff Turner. License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic.

January 15 (Renewables Now) - By 2050 distributed generation (DG) solar systems will put at risk USD 67 billion (EUR 55bn) of traditional utilities annual revenue in Europe, and USD 49 billion in the US, EY calculates.

In Oceania about USD 11 billion in utilities revenues will be threatened, according to a new research by EY and a leading global analyst house.

The report says that Europe will reach off-grid parity by 2022, which means that by that year buying power from an energy provider would cost more than self-generation and storage. In Oceania that can be achieved as early as 2021, but in the US the picture is different. Some US markets, such as the Southeast, could arrive at off-grid parity as late as 2042.

The US will take more time to off-grid parity because of the low cost of generation, which is in fact made possible by the growth of utility-scale renewable energy capacities, the sustained low cost of natural gas, the low levels of taxation in energy bills and the lower costs of grid maintenance, EY explains.

Also according to the research, the cost of delivering electricity would exceed the cost of self-generated and stored power by 2040 in Europe and Oceania. In the US Northeast region that would happen by 2039.

“Maturing renewable energy technologies, the falling cost of battery storage and more empowered consumer behavior have long pointed toward the emergence of a radical new energy system. While the trends and timelines vary between markets and geographies, the research clearly shows that the countdown to a new energy future is accelerating faster than most expected,” said Benoit Laclau, head of EY Global Power & Utilities.

Electric vehicles (EVs), meanwhile, will achieve cost and performance parity with traditional combustion engine vehicles across all markets by 2025.

(USD 1 = EUR 0.82)

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Browse all articles from Tsvetomira Tsanova

Tsvet has been following the development of the global renewable energy industry for seven years now. She's got a soft spot for emerging markets.

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