EIA figures forecast increase in biomass electricity generation capacity

The August edition of the US Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Short-Term Energy Outlook has been published, revealing forecasts on renewables consumption in the US.

Biomass generating capacity for the electric power sector is expected to hit 7,363 megawatts by the end of 2018, up from 7,313 megawatts in the previous year. The projected figure for 2019 is 7,526 megawatts.

Of this waste is expected to generate 4,284 megawatts in 2018, rising to 4,288 megawatts of capacity by 2019. Wood biomass meanwhile, is expected to rise from 3,079 megawatts in 2018 to 3,238 megawatts in 2019.

By way of comparison, a much larger growth in both solar and wind generation capacity is expected in the same period. Large-scale solar is expected to grow from 32,098 megawatts to 38,428 megawatts by the end of 2019, while wind is expected to grow from 94,578 megawatts to 104,975 megawatts.

In terms of consumption, wood biomass is expected to provide 2.194 quadrillion btu by end of 2018, before falling slightly to 2.174 quadrillion btu in 2019. Waste biomass is expected to grow from 0.496 quadrillion btu to 0.500 over the same period.

Overall, the EIA STEO notes that non-hydropower renewables provided just under 10% of electricity generation in 2017. The Administration forecasts that to grow to more than 10% in 2018, and to nearly 11% in 2019.

The full STEO is available here.

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