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Short-Term Energy Outlook

Release Date: September 12, 2017  |  Next Release Date: October 11, 2017  |  Full Report    |   Text Only   |   All Tables   |   All Figures

Renewables and Carbon Dioxide Emissions

  • Wind electricity generating capacity at the end of 2016 was 82 gigawatts (GW). EIA expects wind capacity additions in the forecast to bring total wind capacity to 88 GW by the end of 2017 and to 96 GW by the end of 2018.
  • Total utility-scale solar electricity generating capacity at the end of 2016 was 22 GW. EIA expects solar capacity additions in the forecast will bring total utility-scale solar capacity to 29 GW by the end of 2017 and to 33 GW by the end of 2018.
  • After declining 1.7% in 2016, energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are projected to decrease by 0.5% in 2017 and then to increase by 2.6% in 2018. Energy-related CO2 emissions are sensitive to changes in weather, economic growth, and energy prices.
U.S. Renewables & CO2 Emissions Summary
  2015 2016 2017 2018
a Conventional hydroelectric power only. Hydroelectricity generated by pumped storage is not included in renewable energy.
b Includes electricity and heat generation
c Other renewables includes biofuels production losses and co-products
d Includes electric power sector use of geothermal energy and non-biomass waste
U.S. Renewables Consumption (quadrillion Btu)
Geothermal 0.212 0.226 0.228 0.236
Hydropowera 2.321 2.477 2.778 2.499
Solar 0.426 0.587 0.789 0.923
Waste Biomass 0.518 0.522 0.518 0.523
Wind 1.776 2.112 2.300 2.412
Wood Biomass 2.071 1.959 1.964 1.954
Electricity Subtotalb 7.311 7.867 8.552 8.521
Biomass-based Diesel 0.215 0.289 0.316 0.328
Ethanol 1.148 1.186 1.186 1.216
Biofuels Subtotal 1.363 1.475 1.499 1.544
Otherc 0.776 0.796 0.812 0.825
Total 9.450 10.138 10.863 10.890
Carbon Dioxide Emissions by Fuel (million metric tons)
Petroleum and Other Liquid Fuels 2295 2320 2333 2364
Natural Gas 1473 1485 1430 1493
Coal 1480 1354 1370 1410
Total Energyd 5259 5170 5145 5278

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