Have Solar, Wind and Storage Become the ‘Default Choice’?

With renewables now mainstream, Wood Mackenzie argues power markets must shift to greet the change.

Are we already in this new paradigm where solar, storage and wind are the default choice?

California has been a haven for solar developers for years. Beginning in 2006, the gigawatts’ worth of solar in its yearly queue of requests rivaled the state’s gas capacity. Wind hasn’t been far behind. And four years ago, energy storage additions began to creep in.

According to Prajit Ghosh, head of global strategy at Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables, those trends have become even more pronounced in the last two years and have nearly knocked gas from the California queue entirely.

“Really, in the last two years, it’s all solar, wind and storage. There’s no gas,” Ghosh said onstage Tuesday at WoodMac’s Power & Renewables Summit in Austin, Texas. “We know that story.”


Reckoning with the clean energy transition

California is arguably a unique case. So what happens when taking a look at that same snapshot in other regions around the country?

Ghosh pointed to ERCOT, Duke Progress North Carolina’s territory and the cradle of natural gas, PJM, as indications of a monumental shift in electricity markets.