Note that you have to gradually replace generator plants anyway. They wear out. You might as well build gas fired plants, wind turbines and solar cells instead of coal plants. Natural gas is cheaper than coal, which is why the Trump policy of making coal the top fuel again will never work. Wind is also cheaper than a new coal plant, and far cheaper over the life of a turbine because there is no fuel cost. Solar is rapidly falling in price and will soon be the cheapest source of electricity in many geographical areas (depending on how much sunlight they get).
See Table 1 here:
Table 1, here:
Wind energy is the most ignorant solution to a national energy plan possible, and no utility would put up a single turbine without the heavy government subsidy, meaning the tax payer takes it in the ass.
The capital costs are multiples of alternatives, the efficiencies are low due to transmission losses, maintenance is high and expensive, they decimate large quantities of migratory birds, and the availability
sucks. And while wind may be free, there is a lot more to the price of a delivered kWh than the base energy component, the cost of the coal for 10 cent per kWh electricity is just under a penny. The availability issue causes all kinds inane discussions about batteries, capacitors and pumping water, all hugely inefficient and or polluting in their own right, so one is left with building gas plants of EQUIVALENT CAPACITY. In the final analysis, the true cost is at at least 3x-4x more conventional sources. Real genius at work making your industry uncompetitive and you people poor.