The recent Climate Central report shows that currently, in the US, republican states lead the way in solar and wind power production. Last year national wind and solar power production shoot up to 16%. Through this amount of energy, 64mn Americans were able to power their households. This result came when the Biden administration started to four billions of dollars into renewable energy projects through Inflation Reduction Act. This administration is adamant to decarbonize the grid completely till 2030. The prime focus of this administration is net zero emission till mid-century.
Mostly the climate action steps are opposed by Republican leaders at the local as well as federal levels. But the recent report is shocking because Iowa and Oklahoma, both led by Republican governors, led the nation in wind power energy production. Last year California and Florida led the way in solar power energy production. And Texas was the largest producer of both solar and wind power. This shows the effectiveness of both federal and state incentives at the national level.
The main reason why solar and wind power gained traction in Texas is due to their widely distributed transmission line. Also, only 2% of land in Texas is under federal control, which helps the state to deregulate its energy market. In the past five years, the contribution of wind power energy to the total energy mix has gone up from 15% to 34%. While the gas prices took a nose dive from 49% to 34%.
Furthermore, the main reason why renewable energy popularity is skyrocketing is because of state and federal incentives. In 2018, California law states that starting from 2020, new homes possessing up to three stories must include rooftop solar panels. In 2005, Iowa, passed the highest state credit for wind power energy, which is $0.015 per kWh. Iowa is also the only state where the tax credits are transferable. Which means the recipient can sell the tax credit to a third party.
According to the climate central report, last year the energy generation from solar and wind power increased from 588,471 GWh of electricity to 683,130 GWh. This report also shows that solar hit its peak in summer while wind shows the highest energy production in winter. Mostly the delay in renewable energy is coming from the side of the transmission line. In 2021, 8,100 energy projects in the US seek approval for their connection to the grid station. Out of these projects, 90% were solar and wind power energy projects. While the Inflation Reduction Act is going to pour $2 billion into transmission line buildup. Still, it is a long way to go.