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Electric Power & Utilities/1 Megawatt Hour Sale Price USA

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Question
Bill,

  1st off great info on what you posted awhile ago on the price of 1MW of power of electricity.  Was wondering if you could update that avg price.  And if you can, I am looking into building smaller (under 5MW) hydroelectric (ROR) run-on-the-river dams and was wondering what I could expect that the power company would pay me?

Just a rough guess based on 2013 economy.  Thanks in advance.

Johnny M Wahl

Answer
Johnny -
The electricity your projects produce would be considered to have come from renewable energy.
Many states have passed laws requiring their utilities to produce a certain percentage of their annual electricity generation electricity from projects that use renewable energy. See the following, for example:
http://www.mass.gov/eea/energy-utilities-clean-tech/renewable-energy/rps-aps/rps
State requirements for such Renewable Energy Portfolios creates the market for your projects.
I'm not current on the prices at which various states are contracting for renewable energy, but Google will help you learn all about this. My guess is that it would be a bit more than the retail price that residential customers currently pay for electricity.
Good luck on your small hydro projects.
- Bill

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W.A. (Bill) Stevens

Expertise

I can explain the technical and economic tradeoffs of making electricity from natural gas, coal, nuclear, wind, solar, and biomass energy sources. I'm familiar with air pollution control technologies, including CO2 capture and sequestration. I have a good understanding of the science on global warming and can explain how energy use inefficiencies and various fuels and technologies contribute to that process. I can tell you why we have to build more new gas, nuclear, wind, and solar power plants, but will still have to keep using coal for a few decades to make elctricity. I can explain energy conversion efficiency and power plant operations. However ... I'm not an electrician, so probably cannot help with questions on motors or wiring. ;-)

Experience

Forty years as a registered professional mechanical engineer.

Education/Credentials
Graduate of Purdue University, School of Mechanical Engineering.

Past/Present Clients
EPA, DOE, State Department, USAID, World Bank, Bechtel Power Corporation, U.S. Generating Company, numerous electric utility and independent power companies.

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