Wind power, while good for the environment, carries a price tag twice that of a natural gas- or coal-fired power station, British researchers say.
A report by the U.K. Energy Research Center said Britain’s massive expansion of wind farms, both offshore and on land, was based on underestimated costs of wind power in the mid-2000s, the Daily Mail reported Tuesday.
Over the next 10 years, the British government plans to build up to 10,000 new wind turbines to meet tough climate change targets, the newspaper said.
Instead of the predicted falling costs, in the last five years the cost of buying and installing turbines and towers at sea has gone up 51 percent, the report said.
Once the bill for building and maintaining an offshore wind farm is spread over the 25-year lifespan of a typical installation, each kilowatt hour of electricity costs 24 cents.
That’s nearly twice as expensive as electricity from conventional coal and gas power stations, which costs 13 cents, and more than nuclear, which costs 16 cents, the report said.