Researchers at a Swiss science and technology university testing out which is the most cost-effective renewable energy source in developing countries have made a surprising discovery.
The team calculated the cost of generating a tenth of the electricity demand for each of six countries using either wind turbines or photovoltaic cells. The countries were: Brazil, Egypt, India, Kenya, Nicaragua and Thailand.
Although the six countries selected in the research by ETH Zurich were all in hot climates, researchers found that wind rather than solar power represented the best value for money.
In Kenya and Nicaragua, the results were even more counterintuitive. In both those countries they found that because of the current high oil price, producing electricity with wind power was cheaper in real terms than the present energy model, which relies mainly on electricity generated from fossil fuels.