Renewable Energy

Renewables and Carbon Dioxide Emissions

  • Wind energy capacity at the end of 2016 was 81 gigawatts (GW). EIA expects capacity additions in the forecast will bring total wind capacity to 95 GW by the end of 2018.
  • On a percentage basis, solar power is expected to be the fastest growing renewable energy source in the forecast period, with total utility-scale capacity increasing by 44% from the end of 2016 to 31 GW at the end of 2018. With that level of growth, solar is expected to account for 1.4% of total utility-scale electricity generation in 2018.
  • After declining by 1.9% in 2016, energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are projected to decrease by 0.2% in 2017 and then increase by 1.6% in 2018. Energy-related CO2 emissions are sensitive to changes in weather, economic growth, and energy prices.

DOWNLOADquadrillion BtuprojectionsU.S. renewable energy supplySolarGeothermalOther biomassWind powerLiquid biofuelsWood biomassHydropower20062007200820092010201120122013201420152016201720180123456789101112Source: Short-Term Energy Outlook, March 2017

Note: Hydropower excludes pumped storage generation. Liquid biofuels include ethanol and biodiesel. Other biomass includes municipal waste from biogenic sources, landfill gas, and other non-wood waste.DOWNLOADpercentprojectionsU.S. energy-related carbon dioxide emissionsgrowthAll fossil fuelsCoalPetroleumNatural gas2015201620172018-15%-12%-9%-6%-3%0%3%6%Source: Short-Term Energy Outlook, March 2017

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