Tag Archives: projections

U.S. electric power source projections: solar still most by 2023

According to FERC’s own figures from 2012 and 2016, my solar projections from 2013 (and former FERC Chair Jon Wellinghoff’s) were pretty good, and more U.S. electricity will still come from solar power by 2023. LAKE Solar Table 2017 Since coal and nuclear are already crashing, and natural gas isn’t increasing even as fast as formerly projected, solar could win even faster.

I constructed table below from the 2012 and 2016 summaries of total U.S. electric power generation from all sources, by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

Look at the 2012 column: only coal and natural gas generated more than 25% of total U.S. electricity.

But in 2016 it’s only natural gas, because coal’s growth rate actually turned negative: utilities are shutting down coal plants, not building them. Back in 2013 I did not predict that to happen so quickly.

Now look at the growth rates, both Continue reading

Bloomberg illustrates 63% solar growth in 2012

A graph Bloomberg New Energy Finance posted illustrates the recent 60%+ growth deployed solar capacity, but BNEF fails to project solar’s compound interest growth forward.

Look at the solar numbers in that graph:

2008200920102011 2012
1.6 2.0 2.9 4.9 8.0
Change 25% 45% 69% 63%

Then look at that last row I added, which is each year’s percentage increase over the previous year, as in 8.0 for 2012 divided by 4.9 for 2011 = 1.63 or 63%. Slightly more for the previous year, and less in years before that. In other words, the annual compound growth rate for solar is around the 65% rate reported by the solar industry.

And slightly higher than the 60.9% FERC rate I used Continue reading