Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Electricity Generation Scoreboard: Gas Down 8%; Coal Up 8%; Nuclear Down 2.5%; Wind Up 10% & Solar Up 228%

Total electricity production in the USA barely changed, climbing just 1%, the first two months of 2013, compared to the same period in 2012.  But the stability in total power production conceals tremendous changes in the fortunes of the industries that generate electricity.

Coal generation is up 8%, while gas generation is down 8%.  That alone is big change.

Though coal and natural gas remain the heavyweights of electricity generation locked in near mortal combat, solar power is now on the scoreboard.  To be sure it is but a tadpole today. Yet, it is growing at a stupendous rate.

Solar production is up 228% in 2013, compared to 2012.  Amazing.

If that growth rate continues, solar will be providing 1% of America's electricity generation within 2 years.  In the electricity generation battles, solar is becoming a contender!

Already a contender, wind power production is up so far a solid 10% in 2013 and continues to close on hydro power, the long-reigning, renewable energy electricity generation champion.  In 2013, wind will produce about 60% of the power generated by hydro.

As for nuclear, America's third leading source of electricity generation, 2013 has seen a 2.5% drop so far in power production.

How electricity is generated in the USA is undergoing enormous change that is being driven by the comparative prices of coal and natural gas and the gathering renewable energy revolution.

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