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Which States Produce the Most Renewable Energy?

Introduction

As the renewable energy industry continues to grow, states are beginning to find renewable energy sources that best cater to their specific geographic strengths. In turn widespread wind, solar, hydroelectric, and geothermal projects are becoming more common as states work to build reliable infrastructure. In this article we will take a look at which states are currently producing the most renewable energy.

 

Texas

Texas is the state with the most renewable energy production with 36,270,000 megawatts hours in Q3 2023. Wind is the most utilized renewable energy type in Texas accounting for 26,806,000 megawatt hours in the same quarter. Texas’s renewable energy production in Q3 2023 resulted in a 22.2% increase from the same quarter the previous year. As of 2022 Texas has the most wind energy capability with a total of 40,556 megawatts, accounting for over 25% of the US’s wind energy capabilities. In the coming years Texas will most likely see an increase in its solar energy production as the state will see nearly $22 billion worth of solar investment in Q1 2023.

 

California

California is the state with the second most renewable energy production in the United States with 28,784,000 megawatt hours in Q3 2023. The majority of California’s renewable energy came from solar and geothermal energy harvesting. California’s 28,784,000 megawatt hours produced in Q3 2023 represented a 19.6% increase from the same quarter the previous year. Like Texas, this shows promising year over year growth as the state works to incent more widespread renewable energy infrastructure. California is also one of only four states that produced solar, wind, hydroelectric, and geothermal energy in Q3 2023.

Washington

Washington is the state with the third most renewable energy production with 16,070,000 megawatt hours in Q3 2023. The state is the top producer of hydroelectric energy in the country, with the majority of its renewable energy coming from hydroelectric plants. However, Washington’s dependence on hydroelectric energy has led to more volatility in the state’s renewable energy production. Their Q3 2023 production of 16,070,000 megawatt hours represented a 26.7% decrease from the same quarter the previous year. This decrease was most likely attributed to a mix of drought impact on their hydroelectric infrastructure as well as increased dependence on non-renewable energy sources as economic conditions worsened.

 

Other Notable States

Just outside the top three producing states are Oklahoma and New York. In Q3 2023 Oklahoma produced 8,746,000 megawatt hours compared to New York’s 8,599,000 megawatt hours. With similar weather and landscapes to Texas, it’s no surprise that wind is Oklahoma’s most utilized renewable energy type. The state has built infrastructure to support over 9,000 megawatts of wind energy and is home to the Traverse Wind Energy Center, one the largest wind projects in the world. The state has recently been focused on enhancing its transmission infrastructure as well as incentivizing energy storage solutions in order to better transfer and store energy.

 

New York’s renewable energy infrastructure includes hydroelectric, wind, and solar energy. While New York’s total renewable energy production isn’t as high as the previously mentioned states, its diverse mix of renewable energy types despite unfavorable weather and landscape is quite impressive. The state’s most utilized renewable energy type is hydroelectric energy with an installed capacity of approximately 4,200 megawatts. Solar energy is New York’s second most utilized renewable energy type with infrastructure to support over 3,500 megawatts of energy. The state also utilizes wind energy with over 2,000 megawatts of installed wind capacity.

The Future of Renewable Energy

As the renewable energy industry continues to innovate and grow, these states are leading the way to widespread renewable energy adoption. As more states begin to develop renewable energy infrastructure, factors such as interconnection and energy storage will require attention in order to meet demand.

The data used in this article was from the US Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) website for Q3 2022 through Q3 2023.

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