Comparison of electricity generation costs
Tarjanne, Risto; Kivistö, Aija (2008)
Lappeenranta University of technology
Julkaisun pysyvä osoite on
The economical competitiveness of various power plant alternatives is compared. The comparison comprises merely electricity producing power plants. Combined heat and power (CHP) producing power will cover part of the future power deficit in Finland, but also condensing power plants for base load production will be needed. The following types of power plants are studied: nuclear power plant, combined cycle gas turbine plant, coal-fired condensing power plant, peat-fired condensing power plant, wood-fired condensing power plant and wind power plant. The calculations are carried out by using the annuity method with a real interest rate of 5 % per annum and with a fixed price level as of January 2008. With the annual peak load utilization time of 8000 hours (corresponding to a load factor of 91,3 %) the production costs would be for nuclear electricity 35,0 €/MWh, for gas based electricity 59,2 €/MWh and for coal based electricity 64,4 €/MWh, when using a price of 23 €/tonCO2 for the carbon dioxide emission trading. Without emission trading the production cost of gas electricity is 51,2 €/MWh and that of coal electricity 45,7 €/MWh and nuclear remains the same (35,0 €/MWh) In order to study the impact of changes in the input data, a sensitivity analysis has been carried out. It reveals that the advantage of the nuclear power is quite clear. E.g. the nuclear electricity is rather insensitive to the changes of nuclear fuel price, whereas for natural gas alternative the rising trend of gas price causes the greatest risk. Furthermore, increase of emission trading price improves the competitiveness of the nuclear alternative. The competitiveness and payback of the nuclear power investment is studied also as such by using various electricity market prices for determining the revenues generated by the investment. The profitability of the investment is excellent, if the market price of electricity is 50 €/MWh or more.