Renewables currently produce more energy than fossil fuels in Europe, and the United States is on its way there. According to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), renewable power output will surpass coal in 2022, with 4,090 million megawatt-hours generated from solar, wind, hydropower, biomass, and geothermal technologies. These green sources surpassed nuclear in 2021, but the margin expanded last year. They have a total stake of around 21%.
The transition occurred as a result of increased renewable capacity and coal’s years-long decline. Wind was the major source of renewable power, with capacity increasing from 133 gigatonnes in 2021 to 141 gigatonnes the following year. Hydro came in second, followed by utility-scale solar, biomass, and geothermal energy. Coal’s contribution fell to 20% as a result of the shutdown of certain facilities and the decreased usage of others. Nuclear power has been generally stable, however the closing of Michigan’s Palisades power plant reduced it to 19%.
It may come as no surprise to learn which states dominated certain renewable energy sources. Sunny California led the way in solar power production, accounting for 26% of total output, while Texas had a comparable share of wind generating. Texas also possesses the most coal and natural gas reserves, however its lead in these sectors is marginal.
In 2022, natural gas surpassed renewables as the leading energy source, accounting for 39 percent of the market. Despite regulatory efforts, it is clear that clean technology has a strong footing in the United States. We anticipate that the trends will continue. President Biden’s government has extensively supported renewable energy, including the licencing of the country’s first significant offshore wind farm, while the EIA predicts that coal consumption will fall to 17 percent. Natural gas may maintain its comfortable advantage, but it suddenly faces a new key competitor.