Non-hydro Renewables Generate 10% of U.S. Electricity

Over the 12 months to end October, and for the first time, non-hydro renewables generated 10% of the nation’s total electricity.

The following chart shows rolling 12-month electricity generation, as a percentage of total U.S. generation, for the decade from January 2008 to October 2017. During this time non-hydro renewables went from generating 2.6% to 10% of total electricity. This represents a market share increase of 7.4% – an amount not far short of the 9.5% gain achieved by natural gas over the same period.

As recently as January 2008, wood was generating more electricity than wind while solar was virtually non-existent. After ten years of rapid growth, wind now dominates with 62% of non-hydro generation followed by solar with 19%.

The rapid growth of wind and solar is further illustrated by the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s ‘Short Term Energy Outlook’ released earlier this month. It estimated that “generation from renewable energy sources other than hydropower grows from about 8% in 2016 to a forecast share of nearly 10% in 2018“.

Wind (and solar!) once gain beating the forecasts.


 

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