CHART: Here's Why Renewable Energy Has Miles To Go Before It Leaps Into Mainstream

This morning, Citi’s Tim Arcuri, Jason Channell and Tim Lam released a 400-page tome on the state of renewable energy worldwide.

One chart basically captures the entire opus.

Here is that chart, showing the scaled cost comparison between all known energy sources.

energy costs

Photo: Citi

LCOE stands for levelized costs of energy, and is used to compare operation, management, financing and development costs across energy processes with different inputs. The bars represent the range of costs found for producing a given energy.

Bottom line: Until some of those bars are scaled back to where hydrocarbons currently stand, we should not expect any kind of renewable revolution anytime soon. 

Update: As Black Coral Capital’s Rob Day observed, this chart could stand to be a bit more nuanced, as there will be some variations according to efficiency, location and end use (retail versus wholesale); clean coal, he points out, actually has far greater cost exposure.    

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