When debating about whether or not solar and wind are true alternatives we need to discuss cost and time issues associated with production of such power plants. We also need to compare them to current methods and methods that are close to being implemented. It’s also important to note that there is such a thing as safe nuclear.
United States Energy Consumption
Average power usage: 5,800TWh/1year = 6.62×10^11 watts
Total production time: At one per month 602/12 = 51 years
Number of units required for that much power: 6.62×10^11watts/900MW = 736
Total production time: At one per month 736/12 = 63 years
Solar thermal power plants are the most effective at producing electricity and evening out the inconsistencies associated with solar power.
However even a highly effective power plant has many flaws. The cost and time to produce the plant, and the amount of land needed to house the plant are high.
Land usage: 400 acres
Estimated construction cost: $2B
Time to produce: 2 years
Number of units required for that much power: 6.62×10^11/340MW = 1,947
Total land usage required: 400 acres x 1,947 = 1,216 sq miles
Total cost: $2B x 1,216 = $2.4T
Total time: At one plant produced every month 1,216/12 = 100 years