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Published on March 13th, 2016 | by Zachary Shahan


US Wind & Solar Electricity Generation Grew By 20,659 MWh In 2015 (2015 US Electricity Generation Report)

March 13th, 2016 by  

US wind and solar electricity generation grew by 20,659 MWh in 2015, compared to the full year 2014. That’s compared to fossil fuel electricity generation dropping by 18,041 MWh. Unfortunately, in part due to terrible drought, hydroelectricity generation dropped 8,199 MWh.

Percentagewise, the total split by energy source for 2015 was:

  • coal — 33%
  • natural gas — 32.5%
  • nuclear — 19.4%
  • hydro — 6.1%
  • wind — 4.7%
  • wood and wood-derived fuels — 1%
  • solar (all types) — 0.9%

As reported last month, 69% of new electricity generation capacity in 2015 came from renewables. Meanwhile, 80% of retired electricity generation capacity was coal power capacity. The story could be even better in 2016. Nonetheless, the US power system is gigantic, and transitioning from dirty energy to clean renewables is quite a long process.

Still, it is happening. In 2014, solar and wind accounted for 5.1% of electricity generation. In 2015, they accounted for 5.6%. And just in December, they accounted for 6.9%, compared to 5.3% in December 2014.

For more info, check out the table and charts below. (For the charts, be sure to note which tab is selected.)

US electricity December 2015

US electricity December 2014

US electricity 2015

US electricity 2014

US Renewable Electricity Generation - December 2015

Source of data: US EIA 


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About the Author

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species). He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor. He's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession and Solar Love. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, and Canada. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in. But he offers no professional investment advice and would rather not be responsible for you losing money, so don't jump to conclusions.

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