Indian coal fired power plants are the fifth most profitable globally after South Korea. India is the third largest in terms of operational and under construction coal fired power plants after the US.The most profitable power plants are from South Africa, followed by Australia and Indonesia.
This data has been compiled by Carbon Tracker, a not-for-profit financial think tank researching on climate change.
According to the study, Indian coal fuelled power plants have a capacity-weighted average gross profitability of $13 MWh. South Korea is a close fourth at $15 per MWh. Indonesia and Australia both have exhibited capacity-weighted average gross profitability of $20 per MWh. The highest profitability has been exhibited by South Africa at $23 per MWh.
It has been estimated that coal fired power plants from China, US, Ukraine, Europe and Russia are all loss making. Russian plants are the most loss making where capacity-weighted average gross profitability of plants are a negative $12 per MWh. The figure for China is a negative $3 per MWh while those in the US are a negative $4 per MWh.
According to the non-profit organisation, India’s operational and under construction coal fired power plants at 254 giga watt represent 12.5% of the world total which has been estimated at 2043 GW. China represents 51% of the world capacity.
The study estimates that 62% of Indian coal fired power plants’ are running at costs that are higher than new renewable plants. Carbon Tracker feels that by 2030 cost of operating of all coal fired plants would be more than cost of renewable power plants.
Experts from Carbon Tracker has estimated that 42% of global coal capacity is already unprofitable because of high fuel costs; by 2040 that could reach 72% as existing carbon pricing and air pollution regulations drive up costs while the price of onshore wind and solar power continues to fall any future regulation would make coal power still more unprofitable.
Globally it costs more to run 35% of coal power plants than to build new renewable generation. By 2030 building new renewables will be cheaper than continuing to operate 96% of today’s existing and planned coal plants.(See: Coal)
China could save $389 billion by closing plants in line with the Paris Climate Agreement instead of pursuing business as usual plans. The EU could save $89 billion, the US could save $78 billion; and Russia could save $20 billion.