Wind, solar produce 10 percent of US electricity for first time

Wind, solar produce 10 percent of US electricity for first time

Wind and solar produced 10 percent of the electricity generated in the United States for the first time in March, federal energy officials said Wednesday. 

The Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) monthly power report for March found that wind produced 8 percent of the electricity produced in the U.S. that month, with solar producing 2 percent. 

The two sources combined to have their best month ever in terms of percentage of overall electricity production, EIA said. The agency expects the two sources topped 10 percent again in April but forecasts that their generation will fall below that mark during the summer months. 

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Due to the way geographic wind patterns affect the generation of electricity, the two sources typically combine for their best months in the spring and fall. Annually, wind and solar made up 7 percent of electric generation in 2016, EIA said. 

EIA’s report comes the day after an annual energy report from BP found renewable energy to be the fastest-growing source of electricity in 2016, growing by 12 percent and producing 4 percent of the world's electricity. 

Renewable energy advocates have cheered the industry’s growth, calling it a clean, increasingly inexpensive source of electricity. 

Some conservatives, though, contend its prevalence is a threat to grid reliability, an issue the Trump administration’s Energy Department is currently investigating.