New reports out last week show the current and potential strength of renewable energy in the US and world. One report showed that wind and solar power could provide up to 80 percent of the US’s electric needs, while another report showed the spectrum of renewable energy now employees 2.2 million people across the US.
Already renewable energy is providing 70 percent or more of the electricity for more than 100 of the world’s cities found Great Britain’s CDP. Fully 40 of them get all their electricity from renewable sources, including hydropower. CDP analyzed data contributed by more than 570 cities across the world. In the US 58 cities have already made a commitment to 100 percent renewable energy.
In the US a new university study found that wind and solar power could provide up to 80 percent of the US’s electric generation. The study, from the University of California, Irvine (UCI); the California Institute of Technology; and the Carnegie Institution for Science. The study’s findings are much higher than previous reports and studies.
Just five years ago most studies anticipated that the US electric grid could only handle up to 30 percent of the nation’s energy supply. However, the study found that transmission infrastructure and or energy storage would need to be added to reach that level.
The renewable energy industries—including wind, solar and energy efficiency—employ 2.2 million people across the US. That’s what the new US Clean Energy Progress Map, shows. The map, an interactive tool, allows users to see the impacts of renewable energy on local jobs across the US. The tool was developed by a broad coalition of members, including the Alliance to Save Energy, The Blue Green Alliance, and the Environmental Defense Fund.
The US solar market continues to evolve as well. In New York the state has upped the size of community solar projects in the state. Now developers can build community solar projects up to 5 megawatts in size in the state. Previously they were limited to 2 megawatts in size.Tweet