US EIA: Coal is Still King
Guest note by David Middleton
Too fracking funny! (By fracking, I don’t mean frac’ing.)
SEPTEMBER 10, 2018
Coal is the most-used electricity generation source in 18 states; natural gas in 16
Electricity generators that use fossil fuels continue to be the most common sources of electricity generation in most states. In all but 15 states, coal, natural gas, or petroleum liquids were the most-used electricity generation fuel in 2017. Since 2007, the number of states where coal was the most prevalent electricity generation fuel has fallen as natural gas, nuclear, and hydroelectricity have gained market share.
In 2017, coal provided the largest generation share in 18 states, down from 28 states in 2007. Natural gas had the largest share in 16 states, up from 11 in 2007. Petroleum remained the largest generation share in only one state—Hawaii—providing 62% of the state’s electricity generation in 2017. For the United States as a whole, natural gas provided 32% of total electricity generation in 2017, slightly higher than coal’s 30% share.
Beyond fossil fuels, nuclear power plants provided the largest electricity share in nine states, up from six in 2007. Hydroelectricity is the most prevalent electricity generation source in six states, up from four in 2007. Hydro is the only renewable energy source with the largest share in any state, but that may soon change with the continued addition of wind turbines in states such as Kansas and Iowa.
Even though coal’s lead has been cut from 10 to 2 States since 2007, it’s still in first place. Numbers in parentheses reflect the change since 2007.
- Coal: 18 (-10)
- Natural Gas: 16 (+5)
- Nuclear: 9 (+3)
- Hydroelectric: 6 (+2)
- Petroleum: 1 (0)
- Total: 50
What about wind and solar? Let’s ask Dean Wormer!
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