SUN DAY CAMPAIGN
FIRST MONTH OF 2018, RENEWABLE ELECTRICITY GROWS OVER 9%, SOLAR BALLOONS BY 45%, WIND TOPS 7% OF TOTAL GENERATION, SURPASSING HYDRO
Contact: Ken Bossong, 301-270-6477 x.6
Washington DC – According to an analysis by the SUN DAY Campaign of summary statistics in the latest issue of the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) “Electric Power Monthly” (with data for January 2018), electrical generation by renewable sources (i.e., biomass, geothermal, hydropower, solar, wind) grew by over nine percent in the first month of this year compared to January 2017.
A drop of 8.7% in hydropower output and a 1.9% decline in geothermal were more than offset by a 44.8% increase in solar-generated electricity (i.e., utility-scale + distributed) coupled with a 29.3% expansion of wind-generated electricity and 3.0% growth in electricity produced by wood + biomass.
For January 2018, wind power alone accounted for 7.2% of total electrical generation and, apparently for the first time, surpassed power produced by the nation’s hydro facilities (6.8%). In addition, solar grew to more than 1.3% of total generation. Wind and solar were 6.1% and 1.0% respectively of total electrical generation a year earlier.
Electrical generation from all sources (i.e., including fossil fuels and nuclear power), grew by 9.4%. As a consequence, notwithstanding more than a 9.0% increase in production by renewable sources, their share of total domestic electrical generation in January 2018 — 17.1% — remained essentially unchanged from a year earlier.
By comparison, coal’s share dropped from 33.7% to 31.7% and nuclear power’s share declined from 21.3% to 19.9% — both offset by natural gas whose share grew from 26.7% to 29.2%.
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EIA’s latest “Electric Power Monthly” report was released on March 23, 2018. For the data cited in this news update, see: https://www.eia.gov/electricity/monthly/epm_table_grapher.php?t=epmt_es1b . Percentages cited reflect the inclusion of EIA data for distributed solar as well as utility-scale solar.