RENEWABLE ENERGY PROVIDES 37% OF ALL NEW U.S. ELECTRICAL GENERATING CAPACITY IN 2013

SUN DAY CAMPAIGN

6930 Carroll Avenue, Suite #340; Takoma Park, MD 20912

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News Advisory

 

RENEWABLE ENERGY PROVIDES 37%

OF ALL NEW U.S. ELECTRICAL GENERATING CAPACITY

IN 2013

 

SOLAR SURPASSED ONLY BY NATURAL GAS

 

NEW RENEWABLE CAPACITY MORE THAN TRIPLE

COAL, OIL, AND NUCLEAR POWER COMBINED

 

 

For Release: Monday, January 27, 2014

Contact:  Ken Bossong, 301-270-6477 x.11

Washington DC – According to the latest “Energy Infrastructure Update” report from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s Office of Energy Projects, renewable energy sources (i.e., biomass, geothermal, hydropower, solar, wind) accounted for 37.16% of all new domestic electrical generating capacity installed during calendar-year 2013 for a total of 5,279 MW.

That is more than three-times that provided for the year by coal (1,543 MW – 10.86%), oil (38 MW – 0.27%), and nuclear power (0 MW – 0.00%) combined. However, natural gas dominated 2013 with 7,270 MW of new capacity (51.17%).  Waste heat provided the balance of new generating capacity – 76 MW (0.53%).

Among renewable energy sources, solar led the way in 2013 with 266 new “units” totaling 2,936 MW followed by wind with 18 units totaling 1,129 MW. Biomass added 97 new units totaling 777 MW while water had 19 new units with an installed capacity of 378 MW and geothermal steam had four new units (59 MW).

The newly installed capacity being provided by the solar units is second only to that of natural gas. The new solar capacity in 2013 is 42.80% higher than that for the same period in 2012.

For the two-year period (January 1, 2012 – December 31, 2013), renewable energy sources accounted for 47.38% of all new generation capacity placed in-service (20,809 MW).

Renewable energy sources now account for 15.97% of total installed U.S. operating generating capacity:  water – 8.44%, wind – 5.20%, biomass – 1.36%, solar – 0.64%, and geothermal steam – 0.33%.  This is more than nuclear (9.25%) and oil (4.05%) combined. *

“Renewable energy sources are leaving coal, oil, and nuclear power in the dust as new sources of electrical generating capacity while challenging natural gas’ current dominance,” concluded Ken Bossong, Executive Director of the sun DAY Campaign. “The growth of renewables is likely to accelerate as the costs for new solar and wind, in particular, continue to drop making them ever more competitive with fossil fuels and nuclear power.”

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The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission released its most recent 5-page “Energy Infrastructure Update,” with data through December 31, 2013, on January 24, 2014. See the tables titled “New Generation In-Service (New Build and Expansion)” and “Total Installed Operating Generating Capacity” at http://www.ferc.gov/legal/staff-reports/2013/dec-energy-infrastructure.pdf.

* Note that generating capacity is not the same as actual generation. Actual net electrical generation from renewable energy sources in the United States now totals about 13% according to the most recent data (i.e., as of November 2013) provided by the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

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The sun DAY Campaign is a non-profit research and educational organization founded in 1993 to promote sustainable energy technologies as cost-effective alternatives to nuclear power and fossil fuels.