Slowly but surely, the United States is proving itself to be a contender in the race to become powered (at least partially) by renewable energy sources, such as wind, solar, and hydropower. Evidence to support this claim comes from the United States Energy Information Administration (EIA). In March of 2017, the United States generated 10 percent of total electric from solar power and wind power — a first in history. This is remarkable news, considering the President of the country opposes renewable energy investments and the head of the EPA has numerous ties to the oil industry.
As Inhabitat reports, energy generated from the two renewable energy sources made up approximately seven percent of the nation’s electricity generation in 2016. A three percent increase in one year may not seem like much, but it signifies positive change.
The report notes how seasons impact the amount of clean energy that can be generated in the country. In Texas and Oklahoma, for instance, it is more common for wind electricity generation to reach its peak in the spring. In comparison, the amount of wind energy generated in California usually reaches its height in the summer. Unsurprisingly, solar output is at its highest in the summer due to longer daylight hours.
The EIA report goes on to predict that this is just the beginning of the US generating more than 10 percent of its electricity from clean energy sources. Based on weather patterns from previous years, the EIA predicted that the country would again generate over 10 percent of its electricity from renewables in April. In either the spring or fall, solar and wind combined tend to generate the cleanest energy, said the administration.
So far, wind turbines are providing more energy output than solar. Only California and Arizona generated more solar energy than wind energy in the year 2016. Incredibly, Texas generated the most wind energy out of all 50 states. Additionally, the state of Iowa can boast it generated 37 percent of its power from renewables. Approximately six other states generated about 20% of their energy needs from wind and solar.
Though the United States will be withdrawing from the Paris climate change agreement, it has been made clear by numerous politicians that individual states will continue to reduce their collective carbon footprint and invest in green technologies. What are your thoughts? Please comment below and share this news!