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Texas Solar Energy Generation Overtakes Coal in March and April 

Texas solar energy

Texas achieved a historic feat in March: for the first time ever, solar energy outpaced coal in energy generation. This trend continued into April, marking a notable shift in the state’s energy landscape. 

According to the Interval Generation by Fuel Report from the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), solar energy production in the state exceeded coal in both March and April of 2024. In April alone, Texas generated 3508 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of energy from solar sources, compared to 3488 GWh from coal. Similarly, March saw 3301 GWh of energy generated by solar, surpassing the 2917 GWh produced by coal. 

The data paints a clear picture of the rising prominence of solar energy in Texas. ERCOT also shows that so far in 2024, solar energy accounts for 9 percent of total energy generated, while coal stands at 12 percent. However, if the recent trajectory continues, solar energy could overtake coal in total energy generated for the year. 

In this blog, EG4 Electronics will discuss how solar and renewable energy is growing in the state of Texas.  

Texas Ranks Second in Solar Power Production 

The Energy Information Administration states that Texas has coal reserves estimated at around 9 billion tons, making up nearly 4% of the nation’s total. However, renewable resources contributed to approximately one-fourth of in-state electricity net generation in Texas in 2022, with the state accounting for 15% of the nation’s total electricity generation from all renewable sources. Texas ranks sixth in the nation for solar power potential. Furthermore, the state was the second-largest producer of solar power after California in 2022. Solar PV capacity in Texas exceeded 13,500 megawatts, with solar energy alone accounting for about 5% of the state’s total electricity generation. 

Texas’s commitment to renewable energy is evident through its establishment of an energy efficiency resource standard (EERS) in 1999, making it the first state to do so. Additionally, the Texas Public Utility Commission adopted rules for a state renewable generation requirement, aiming to acquire 10,000 megawatts of renewable capacity by 2025. Remarkably, Texas surpassed this goal in 2009 – one year early – largely due to the state’s wind farms. In fact, by early 2023, Texas had over 12,400 megawatts of utility-scale renewable capacity, with almost 14,600 megawatts of non-wind renewable generating capacity, including small-scale solar. 

Moreover, the state’s commitment to renewable energy is illustrated by the increasing prominence of solar and other renewable sources. As Texas continues to increase adoption of renewable energy sources, it reinforces its position as a key player in shaping the future of sustainable energy generation. 

Texas Dominates National Solar Energy Expansion in 2024 

In 2024, developers and power plant owners will add about 63 gigawatts (GW) of new utility-scale electric-generating capacity across the nation according to the EIA. This is a significant increase from the previous year and indicates a continued increase in industry activity.  Solar energy is expected to play a pivotal role in this growth, accounting for the largest share of new capacity at 58%.  

With an expected record addition of more than 36 GW of utility-scale solar projects, Texas is set to solidify its position as a solar energy powerhouse. Notably, more than one-third of the new solar capacity planned for the nation is earmarked for Texas, which reflects the state’s abundant solar resources and favorable regulatory environment.  The state is also positioned to be a key player in the expansion of battery storage capacity, with an expected 14.3 GW of new battery storage capacity this year.

This growth in solar and battery storage capacity aligns with Texas’s broader efforts to diversify its energy portfolio and embrace cleaner, more sustainable energy. As the second-largest producer of solar power in the nation, Texas continues to lead the way in renewable energy adoption, driving innovation and economic growth while reducing environmental impact. 

For more information about how solar energy is growing in Texas and throughout the United States, stay tuned to EG4 Electronics’s blog.  

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Texas is revolutionizing its energy landscape as solar energy outpaces coal for the first time, driving the future of Texas solar energy.

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