Drone shot of a parabolic trough solar plant in Arizona at sunrise. Photo Credit: halbergman/Getty Images

Environment USA3. April 2024

Solar and Battery Storage Are Taking Over the Power Grid

By the end of 2024, 81% of the new electric-generating capacity in the United States should be provided by solar energy and battery storage, a sign that renewables are increasingly added to the national power grid.

In 2024, 62.8 GW of renewable energy will be added to the national power grid. It is an added capacity of 55% from the previous year with a total of 40.4 GW – the most since 2003 – with solar accounting for 58% and battery storage, 23%.

Should the scheduled 36.4 GW be added to the grid, a record addition of utility-scale solar could be reached in 2024. It’s almost double 2023’s 18.4GW increase. With a planned photovoltaic capacity of 690 megawatts (MW) and battery storage of 380 MW, Nevada’s Gemini solar facility could become the largest solar project in the United States. This year, it is also expected to set a record for annual capacity in battery storage, adding 14.3 GW to the existing 15.5 GW. By introducing investment tax credits for stand-alone storage, the Inflation Reduction Act accelerated the development of energy storage. Aside from battery and solar, an additional 8.2 GW of wind capacity is scheduled in 2024. To top it off, this year marks the least new natural gas capacity in 25 years, with only 2.5 GW planned additions.

U.S. Energy Information Administration

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