U.S. Renewable Energy Industry - Statistics & Facts

The share of U.S. electricity generated from renewable energy sources has continued to increase over the last decades, especially biofuels, solar, and wind. The use of renewable energy currently plays an important role in the United States’ economy as it is both a global leader in renewable technologies and supports the nation’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In recent years, more than half of the United States utility-scale capacity additions are expected to be from renewable sources, while most of the rest was new natural gas capacity. As the cost of clean energy technology continues to fall, it is expected that renewables will continue to displace traditional energy sources like coal.

Newly added renewable capacity tends to be concentrated in areas that already have significant renewable capacity, such as the increased wind capacity seen in Texas, Oklahoma, and Iowa. Wind generation is generally evenly spread out across the continental United States. With about over 254 terawatt hours of electricity, wind power generation has seen a steady increase. In comparison, solar power generation totaled around 37 terawatt hours in the same year. Solar energy sources tend to be concentrated in the western part of the country. Hydroelectric conventional power has long been one of the most important renewable energy sources in the United States. Washington is one of the largest consumers of hydroelectric power.

In 2017, a total of around 98 British thermal units of primary energy were consumed in the United States. Renewable energy sources accounted for around 10.4 percent of total U.S. energy consumption. The United States is expected to continue its renewable energy consumption, reaching approximately 17.4 quadrillion British thermal units in 2050.

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Renewable energy sources in the United States - Important statistics

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