Natalia Welzenbach-Marcu | 1/23/2018
The U.S. Energy Information Administration released a statement that contained some encouraging news: Clean, renewable energy use is on the rise, and power plants using coal and fossil fuels are slowly but surely being shut down forever.
In 2017, around 25 gigawatts of utility-scale power was added to the overall power grid –generators capable of producing enough energy to run entire buildings or power grids in residential or business areas. Of those additions, nearly half used renewable energy sources, mostly wind and solar power.
Clean energy comes with some issues, most of them due to infrastructure. Curtailment is the practice of stopping a power plant once it’s produced its fair demand of energy to save on fuel. But this method works better with fossil fuels and consumables. Natural resources, such as wind and solar rays, are often wasted because of curtailment. There is currently no practical way to store excess renewable energy, and any potentially useful clean energy is “wasted” as a result.
Current predictions place wind energy use at around 5.5% nationally.