Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The Growth of US Renewables are Outpacing Fossil Fuels

Renewable energy is growing faster than fossil fuels in the US. In 2014 new capacity from renewables has grown faster than coal, oil and even gas. Renewable energy generating capacity has increased 72 times faster than coal and 163 times faster than oil. According to the Sustainable Energy in America Factbook, between 2008 and 2015 wind and solar energy capacity in the US has tripled. Renewable energy now contributes just under 17 percent of total installed capacity in the US. That is more than oil and nuclear combined.

A new US Energy Information Administration report indicates that the electricity generated from wind and solar grew much faster than electricity generated by fossil fuels in 2014. Expressed as a percentage, solar grew by 103 percent, and wind by over 8 percent.

According to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's latest Energy Infrastructure Update report there was more new generating capacity from renewables (mostly wind and solar) in 2014 than there was from gas. Renewables generated 50 percent of new capacity while gas generated 49 percent. Although this is a modest difference of just over one percent, it is still remarkable given how much effort is being invested in US gas extraction.

More than one quarter (27 percent) of new generating capacity from US renewables came from wind while solar added an additional 20 percent. The remainder of renewable energy capacity (3 percent) came from biomass, geothermal and hydropower.

While renewable energy increased 12 percent in 2014 compared to 2013, gas output last year was very similar to the preceding year.

Related
Renewable Energy Can Replace Fossil Fuels
Renewables will Save us from the Scourge of Fossil Fuels
Time to Reduce the Subsidy Gap Between Fossil Fuels and Renewables
Renewables Gaining on Fossil Fuels Despite Reports to the Contrary
Energy Economics: Cheap Oil Will Not Stop Renewables
Low Oil Prices will Slow Renewable Energy

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