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Submission + - Nuclear pricing itself out of electricity market (thinkprogress.org)

hmbJeff writes: All around the world, the industry that creates nuclear power plants appears to have a strong negative learning curve. That is, costs continue to escalate over time despite over 50 years of experience building plants.

"Using cost data released by the French government after the Fukushima disaster, the study found the cost of French nuclear plants steadily escalated over the past four decades. Further, it projects “the future cost of nuclear power in France to be at least 76€/MWh (US$0.084/KWh) and possibly 117€/MWh (US$0.129/KWh),” which “compares unfavorably against alternative fuels,” such as wind."

Meanwhile, utility scale solar costs are dropping rapidly. "Austin Energy recently received record low bids below $0.04/kWh in response to its 2015 request for proposals (RFP). Those bids were 20% lower than the contract it signed with Recurrent Energy in 2014 for $0.045/kWh and only 25% of the $0.16/kWh it paid for the 30 MW Webberville project, the utility's first large installation.". Wind, although sometimes harder to site, is even lower at 2 cents per KWH.

With renewables showing rapid deployment, steadily dropping prices, and minimal safety or decommissioning concerns, it is getting harder and harder to justify investments in nuclear plants.

Are any of our beloved Slashdot nuclear die-hards ready to reconsider yet?

Submission + - Nuclear in 2018 more expensive than solar PV today (thinkprogress.org)

hmbJeff writes: A study by the California Energy Commission that looks at estimated costs of 21 types of energy generation facilities estimates that a gen-3 Westinghouse AP1000 1,000 MW Pressurized Water Reactor would generate electricity in 2018 for between $0.17/kWh and $0.34/kWh.

The cost of solar PV today is already competitive with the high end of that range, and is dropping at a rapid pace.

This comes on the heels of another new report showing that the free-market insurance costs for nuclear would add from ($0.20/kWh) to a staggering $3.40/kWh.

If costs are the same or lower for renewable energy technologies, why would rational people choose the risks of nuclear?

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