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Nuclear Is Losing Out to Renewables in the Energy Race

10 Oct 15:00 by Steve Walia

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Two new reports from leading US bodies have found that renewable energy is forging ahead of nuclear power when it comes to electricity generation.

The findings were from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). In the first half of the current year, green energy sources such as wind, solar, hydropower, biomass and biofuels produced 5.242 Btus of energy in the USA - spanning electrical, liquid and thermal energy forms.

Nuclear energy, on the other hand, generated just 4.188 Btus, meaning that the green alternatives took a lead over nuclear power of over 25pc.

The report also showed that new renewable energy capacity in the USA had increased to 18pc of the country's total generating capacity. This again compares favourably to nuclear power, which has 9pc of the total energy share. Renewable energy sources now have a total energy generation capacity that is twice the size of nuclear.

Nuclear power has had a nearly flat profile of net electrical power generation over the past ten years, but renewable alternatives have outpaced it with their speed of growth. The EIA has forecast that this pace will continue strongly for green energies in the USA.

A spokesperson for the organisation said that renewable energies in the USA could completely eclipse nuclear power on every level - supply, generation capacity and production - within just half a decade if they can maintain their current growth trajectory.

The news comes as large blue-chip companies and also individual states in the US have forged ahead with their own sustainable agendas whilst lobbying the government to commit more strongly to the low-carbon economy from a centralised policy angle, particularly where subsidies are needed to stimulate investment.