Story at a glance
- The Department of Energy estimates solar power could make up 40 percent of U.S. power generation by 2035.
- Currently, solar power makes up just 3 percent.
- But the administration notes the solar industry will need to grow at a rapid rate to achieve its ambitious goals.
The Biden administration says solar power could make up 40 percent of U.S. energy generation by 2035 if the nation makes “historic investments” to pump up renewable energy projects.
A memo published by the Department of Energy (DOE) Tuesday details how President Biden’s proposed investments in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and his Build Back Better Agenda could lead to a “largely decarbonized electricity sector by 2035,” and result in millions of jobs while countering the climate crisis.
Currently, solar power makes up just 3 percent of U.S. electricity in the form of solar photovoltaics (PV) and concentrating solar-thermal power (CSP). Solar power capacity has grown to an estimated 97.2 gigawatts in the U.S., enough to power nearly 18 million homes.
But the administration notes the solar industry will need to grow at a rapid rate to achieve its ambitious goals.
“The pipeline of new solar projects in 2021 is on pace to hit record highs. To reach a largely decarbonized electricity sector by 2035, solar deployment would need to accelerate to three to four times faster than the current rate by 2030,” the White House said in a release.
“Large scale decarbonization of the electricity sector could move solar from 3 percent of generation today to over 40 percent by 2035,” the release said.
Doing so would require investments in residential, commercial and utility-scale solar systems. Included in the Biden agenda, is the extension of $300 billion in tax cuts for clean energy projects.
The Senate last week passed the administration’s $1 trillion infrastructure plan that includes investments to modernize the nation’s electricity grid.
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