The World's #1 Renewable Energy Network for News, Information, and Companies.

FERC: Almost All New US Electricity Generation Coming from Solar

The U.S. brought online nearly 700 MW of new electricity generation in October, and practically all of it was large-scale solar energy, according to data from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (FERC) Office of Energy Projects.

Out of a total 699 MW of new build and expansions that FERC tracked, 504 MW of that came from 12 solar projects. Interestingly they're spread all over the country, and most have long-term PPAs in hand:

  • Abengoa's 280-MW Solana Generating Station project in Maricopa County, AZ
  • Southern Company's 139-MW Campo Verde Solar project in Imperial County, CA
  • NRG Energy's 36-MW California Valley Solar Ranch Phase 4 project in San Luis Obispo County, CA
  • Southern Company's 30-MW Spectrum Solar project in Clark County, NV
  • eT Energy Solutions' 10-MW Indianapolis International Airport Solar Farm Phase 1 project in Marion County, IN
  • WGL Holdings' 3.8-MW Bellingham Solar project in Worcester County, MA
  • Constellation Solar's 2-MW Owens Corning Delmar Solar project in Albany County, NY
  • St. Albans Solar Partner's 2-MW St. Albans Solar Farm project in Franklin County, VT
  • Envirepel Energy's 2.8-MW biomass fueled Kittyhawk Energy Phase I project in Talladega County, AL

Besides a whole bunch of solar, two wind projects and four biomass projects came online during the month of October, contributing 66 MW and 124 MW respectively.

For the 10 months through October, 12.3 GW of new installed capacity has been brought online; 2.5 GW of that solar, roughly 1 GW wind, 360 MW biomass, and 117 MW of hydro, says FERC. Meanwhile, about 6.6 GW of natural gas was brought online, plus 1.5 GW of coal.

Compared with FERC's statistics from a year ago, it's clear that larger solar projects are really ramping up in the U.S. From Jan-Oct. of this year 190 solar projects came online with 2.5 GW installed generating capacity; through the same period last year there were many more projects but with less than half that amount (260 projects, 1.25 GW). Also note the additions of wind energy have slowed to a trickle: roughly 1 GW through October of this year across 11 projects, compared with 107 projects and 6.2 GW from Jan-Oct. 2012, though activity seems to be picking up in these last couple of months.

Still, solar energy's slice of total generating installed capacity is just a drop in the bucket for the nation's overall profile, roughly 0.6 percent (6.79 GW) out of a total 1,158 GW, lagging well behind wind (60.29 GW, 5.21 percent) and biomass (15.33 GW, 1.32 percent), while geothermal keeps steady at 3.79 GW/ 0.33 percent. All the renewable sectors together minus hydro tally up to about 88 GW, or 7.6 percent of the U.S.' total installed operating generating capacity; adding hydro more than doubles that to 184 GW and roughly 16 percent.

Lead image: US flag overlaid onto wind generators and solar panels, via Shutterstock

RELATED ARTICLES

Renewable Energy Finance

Clean Energy ETFs Are on a Tear

Eric Balchunas, Bloomberg Green investing used to be synonymous with losing money. But while the S&P 500 Index is up 2 percent this year, and the MSCI All-Country World Index is up 5 percent, clean energy ETFs have double-digit re...

Wheels, Towers and Trees: Unconventional Renewable Energy Technologies in the Pipeline

Andrew Williams, International Correspondent A number of companies around the world are developing novel technologies in an effort to grab a slice of the global renewable energy market.  Although many of these technologies are simple incremental improvements to e...
UK Parliament Clean Energy Leaders

UK Government Names Clean Energy Cabinet Members

David Appleyard, Contributing Editor With the UK general election now over and a majority Conservative Party government in place, the re-elected Prime Minister David Cameron has now named key members of the government charged with steering the UK’s clean energ...
Microgrids

Coast to Coast and Across the Electric System, Microgrids Provide Benefits to All

Dick Munson, Environmental Defense Fund At the most obvious level, microgrids could disrupt today’s utilities and their regulated-monopoly business model, because they challenge the centralized paradigm. In a nutshell, microgrids are localized power grids that ha...
Renewable Energy World's network editors help deliver the most comprehensive news coverage of the renewable energy industries. Based in the U.S. and the UK, the team is comprised of editors from Pennwell Corporation's myriad of publications that ...

CURRENT MAGAZINE ISSUE

03/01/2015
Volume 18, Issue 3
file

STAY CONNECTED

To register for our free
e-Newsletters, subscribe today:

SOCIAL ACTIVITY

Tweet the Editors! @megcichon @jennrunyon

FEATURED PARTNERS



EVENTS

Doing Business in Brazil – in partnership with GWEC, the Global Win...

Brazil is one of the most promising markets for wind energy.  Ranke...

EU PVSEC 2015 (European PV Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition)

The EU PVSEC is the largest international Conference for Photovoltaic re...

Wind Power Central America

Wind power projects are expected to reach 46GW of total installed capaci...

COMPANY BLOGS

EU PVSEC 2014: Call for Papers Receives Great Response

More than 1,500 contributions apply for presentation in AmsterdamScienti...

EU PVSEC 2014 extends its Scope

Added focus on application and policy topicsAbstracts for conference con...

Boulder County Residents Generate Their Own Energy with Community S...

Despite a soggy afternoon, solar energy advocates gathered at ...

NEWSLETTERS

Renewable Energy: Subscribe Now

Solar Energy: Subscribe Now

Wind Energy: Subscribe Now

Geothermal Energy: Subscribe Now

Bioenergy: Subscribe Now  

 

FEATURED PARTNERS