Renewable Energy On Par With Nuclear In The USA

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The latest figures on the growth of the renewable energy industry in the United States has the combined forces of solar, wind, hydro-electric and biomass fuel sources on par with nuclear energy in the electricity supply stakes.
      
According to the US Energy Information Administration’s latest quarterly report, renewable energy consumption increased throughout America by about eight percent between 2008 and 2009, contributing nine percent of the nation’s total energy demand, and 10% of total US electricity generation in 2009; equalling that of nuclear energy.
    
While any increase in clean energy production is welcome news, the report found that most renewable energy is utilised in producing energy in conventional power stations such as coal and gas-fired plants. Electricity companies consumed 53 percent of renewable energy generated over the report period.
    
Despite recent large-scale investment in solar energy technology in the US, solar power still only accounted for 0.2 of total renewable energy share in 2009. Hydroelectric energy was the largest contributor (66 percent), followed by wind (17 percent), wood (9 percent), biomass waste (four percent), and geothermal (four percent). Wind power grew by 28 percent over the reporting period, more than any other renewable source.
    
"From a global perspective, EIA projects that renewable energy will be the fastest-growing source of electricity generation through the forecast period to 2035,” the report states. “Much of the increase is expected to be from hydroelectric power and wind power."
    
Based on these figures, the EIA predicts that renewable energy will eventually reach a 17 percent share of power generation in the US by 2035. Unfortunately, this growth will remain dependent upon Federal tax breaks and the continuation of renewable energy incentive schemes. However, it’s worth noting that even after decades, the fossil fuel industry in the USA continues to receive billions of dollars in support each year.