Energy Blue Print

Moving from principles to action for energy supply that mitigates against climate change requires a long-term perspective. Energy infrastructure takes time to build up; new energy technologies take time to develop. Policy shifts often also need many years to take effect. In most world regions the transformation from fossil to renewable energies will require additional investment and higher supply costs over about twenty years

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5.4 future investment in power generation

Figure 5.4 shows that the adoption of renewable technologies in the Energy [R]evolution scenario will reduce future costs for electricity generation in the long term. This is because, in the reference scenario, growth in demand, rising prices for the fossil fuels used to power thermoelectric plants, added to the costs of CO2 emissions, will raise the bill for electricity generation to over US$ 200 billion (R$ 440 billion) in 2050.

A more renewable mix will dispense with the use of fossil fuels and reduce CO2 emissions.This is why the cost of generation in the Energy [R]evolution scenario is as much as UScents$ 4/kWh (R$ 88/MWh) cheaper than the cost projected for the reference scenario in 2050. Efficiency measures will also help to reduce the cost of electricity production by 27% over the same period, compared with the reference scenario.

According to the Energy [R]evolution scenario, the real cost of generation, considering subsidies and excluding tax exemptions, would range from UScents$ 5.9/kWh (R$ 131/MWh) to UScents$ 9.6/kWh (R$ 211/MWh) between 2010 and 2020, rising to UScents$ 10.7/kWh (R$ 236/MWh) in 2035 and stabilizing at US$ 10.5/kWh (R$ 232/MWh) in 2050.This is due to the falling cost of ??????wind and solar energy, which will be responsible for a significant ??portion of the electrical mix at the end of the analysis horizon. While ???the reference scenario shows a higher increase in average generation cost: in 2035, the costs are still equal, but continue to rise until they reach UScents$ 14.5/kWh (R$ 320/MWh) in 2050.

?When the subject turns to the cost of building energy plants and ??????their service life, the reference scenario projects total investments in the electricity sector of US$ 0.85 (R$ 1.87) trillion between 2010 and 2050, while for the Energy [R]evolution scenario the investment would be US$ 1.08 (R$ 2.39) trillion for the same period—or US$ 26.85 (R$ 58) billion per year.

Of the total investment, 97% would be for current renewable technologies—such as wind and biomass generation—and new renewable technologies—based on offshore wind, solar energy from photovoltaic panels and concentrated solar energy (CSP) and ocean energy.

Despite the larger initial investment for the Energy [R]evolution scenario, savings are found when expenses with fossil fuels are factored into each of the scenarios. Considering the price of natural gas and fuel oil and their rising use over the horizon of the analysis, the construction of fewer thermoelectric plants and more renewable energy sources in the Energy [R]evolution scenario would save US$ 0.5 (R$ 1.1) trillion by 2050 or an average of US$ 12.9 (R$ 28.4) billion per year. In this way, the total savings in fuel would cover more than twice the additional investment needed for the Energy [R]evolution scenario.These renewable sources will produce energy without the use of fuel, while the cost of oil and gas will continue to impact the economy.