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Falling Solar Costs Bring Hope for Power-Deprived Bangladesh

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Falling Solar Costs Bring Hope for Power-Deprived Bangladesh

Falling solar power prices offer a glimmer of hope for Bangladesh, which has been grappling with an energy crunch due to heavy reliance on fossil fuels. According to a report by BloombergNEF, solar power is set to become the cheapest source of energy in Bangladesh by 2025, thanks to declining technology costs. By the end of the decade, solar power combined with batteries is expected to be more cost-effective than new coal or gas power plants. This presents an opportunity for Bangladesh to decarbonize its energy sector, which currently relies on fossil fuels for 97% of its electricity generation.

Reducing Dependence on Fossil Fuels

Bangladesh has been planning to increase coal and gas-fired generation to meet its energy needs. However, the depletion of domestic gas reserves and the volatility of gas prices have highlighted the risks of over-reliance on fossil fuels. Shifting towards renewable energy sources like solar power can help the country reduce emissions and improve energy security.

The Urgency to Diversify

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and rising energy import bills have strained Bangladesh's foreign-currency reserves, emphasizing the need to diversify the energy portfolio. By limiting the addition of thermal power plants and investing more in renewables, Bangladesh can lower energy costs, reduce emissions, and support economic growth.
Exploring Renewable Solutions
To limit emissions, Bangladesh is exploring innovative solutions such as co-firing coal power plants with ammonia and blending hydrogen with natural gas. However, these technologies may come with economic burdens. Solar power, on the other hand, offers an affordable and environmentally friendly option that can contribute to the country's energy transition. In conclusion, the falling costs of solar power present an opportunity for Bangladesh to address its energy challenges and reduce its dependence on fossil fuels. By embracing renewable energy sources, the country can improve energy affordability, reduce emissions, and enhance energy security.

The Impact of Falling Solar Costs on New Businesses in Bangladesh

The declining costs of solar power in Bangladesh, as reported by BloombergNEF, could be a game-changer for new businesses in the country. The shift towards renewable energy sources like solar power, driven by its increasing cost-effectiveness, could significantly reduce the country's dependence on fossil fuels, which currently account for 97% of its electricity generation.

Business Opportunities in a Decarbonized Economy

This transition towards solar power offers new businesses a chance to thrive in a decarbonized economy. Companies in the renewable energy sector, for instance, could benefit from the increased demand for solar panels and batteries.

Energy Security and Economic Growth

Moreover, the diversification of Bangladesh's energy portfolio could enhance the country's energy security, reducing the risks associated with heavy reliance on imported fossil fuels. This could create a more stable environment for businesses to operate and grow.
Innovation in Renewable Solutions
Bangladesh's exploration of innovative renewable solutions, such as co-firing coal power plants with ammonia and blending hydrogen with natural gas, could also spur technological innovation. However, as these technologies may come with economic burdens, solar power stands out as a truly affordable and environmentally friendly option. In conclusion, falling solar costs could fuel the growth of new businesses in Bangladesh, fostering innovation, enhancing energy security, and contributing to a more sustainable economy.
Story First Published at: https://financialpost.com/pmn/business-pmn/falling-solar-costs-offer-hope-for-power-deprived-bangladesh
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