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Renewables Are Gaining Ground In New York

The state of New York generated the largest amount of renewable electricity generation of any U.S. state east of the Mississippi last year, with renewable energy sources, including hydropower, accounting for 30 percent of New York’s electricity generation, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Monday.  

Changes in the power generation mix in the state of New York are indicative of the general trend in the overall U.S. power mix over the past 15 years—growing shares of natural gas and renewables at the expense of coal-fired generation, the EIA noted. 

Coal-fired electricity generation capacity across the United States has been falling over the past decade as natural gas has been replacing coal capacity because of the cheap and abundant source of shale gas and stricter emissions regulations.

In the state of New York, the share of coal in electricity generation fell from 14 percent in 2005 to less than 1 percent last year, while the share of natural gas-fired electricity increased to 36 percent from 22 percent. 

In 2019, hydropower accounted for 23 percent of total electricity generation in New York and an overwhelming 78 percent of the state’s renewable energy generation, according to EIA data. 

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Wind power was the second most popular renewable source, accounting for 11 percent of New York State’s renewable generation and 3 percent of the state’s total electricity generation. At the end of last year, New York had 1,132 wind turbines at 27 power plants, according to EIA’s Annual Electric Generator Inventory. 

Solar power followed, with most solar electricity generation coming from small-scale solar installations, such as those found on residential and commercial rooftops. 

Nationwide, New York was fourth in the United States in terms of renewable electricity generation, behind California, Texas, and Washington. California is the leading solar power state, Texas leads in wind power generation, and Washington State in hydropower, EIA data shows.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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