Vestas V80-1.8MW wind turbine outside of Bowling Green, Ohio.


  • The generating capacity of renewable energy in the U.S has surpassed coal for the first time in 2022.

The Energy Information Agency (EIA) has released data that shows that in 2022 for the first time renewable energy surpassed the generating capacity of coal on the U.S grid. This follows data in 2020 showing renewable energy surpassed nuclear energy as a generating source. 

Currently wind and solar account for about 14 percent of the power that's on the grid. Hydro is at about six percent and the other forms such as geothermal and biofuels account for another three percent. The renewable share of the U.S grid is around 23 percent in generating capacity. Coal is currently down to about 20 percent and nuclear is down to about 18 percent. The number one generating source is natural gas at about 40 percent of the generating capacity on the grid.

  • House Republicans have passed an energy package designed to encourage the mining and development of domestic fossil fuel energy sources.

The U.S House of Representatives passed H.R.1 the Lower Energy Costs Act  last Thursday (March 30th). There were four Democrats who voted in favor and one Republican voted against the bill, so basically a party line vote. What this bill will do is provide greater access to public lands for mining and for drilling of oil and gas. This bill will ease permitting processes that are in place to do the mining and drilling. It repeals methane emission costs that were imposed on producers in the Inflation Reduction Act passed last year. This bill will now go to the Senate. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has stated the bill is “dead on arrival.” 

  • North Carolina commission dilutes net metering by lowering compensation to customers

The North Carolina Utilities Commission has changed the state's net metering laws. They are adding ten dollars a month to electric bills of users that have solar installed on their property. They are moving to a time-of-use billing structure, rather than having a flat charge for all energy consumed regardless of the time of day. This is a tiered structure where there are higher costs during peak demand periods and lower cost when demand is less. The Commission is lowering the net metering compensation rate, but is also putting in a 36 cent per watt incentive package in place to incentivise customers to install solar and storage devices. On the whole, studies have shown that these changes to the net metering package will actually lower compensation to those people who net meter their excess energy back to the utility by about 25 to 35 percent. 

  • Massive Solar installation breaks ground in Illinois.

The largest solar installation in Illinois broke ground recently. Swift Current Energy is the developer of this facility. The project is called the Double Black Diamond Project located near Springfield in central Illinois. The system is projected to be an 800 megawatt project consisting of about 1.6 million solar panels. The project falls over two different counties within that state. It is set to begin operation in the fall of 2024. It is anticipated that the project will employ about 435 installers and will bring about a hundred million dollars in tax revenue per year to Sanganon and Morgan counties.

  • A new study from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IREA) says that if we're to meet the global goals set out by the Paris Agreement, then global investment in renewables will have to quadruple by the year 2030. 

A new analysis by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IREA) finds that in order to meet the 1.5 Celsius degree global warming target that was part of the Paris Agreement, the world must deploy about 1,000 gigawatts of renewable energy each year until 2030. Currently there are about 3,000 gigawatts installed. So about one-third of the entire capacity that exists today will need to be installed every year to meet these targets. 

Currently about $1.3 trillion is invested each year in renewable energy. The report states that this level of annual investment will need to increase to about $5 trillion.

Recent testimony by a number of industry experts expressed concern that there is a lack of administrative infrastructure in place to provide for the permitting and interconnection of the needed transmission and generation systems. Also there is a critical lack of a skilled workforce available to install and commission these systems. The workforce issue is, according to the report, an “existential issue” that must be addressed in order to achieve these global renewable energy goals.