Renewable Energy

Texas Renewable Energy Statistics 

Curious about Texas’s power generation and its reliance on different energy sources? This guide delves into Texas’s diverse energy landscape, focusing on renewable sources such as wind, solar, hydroelectric, geothermal, and biomass. 

Let’s explore the progress of sustainable energy in the Lone Star State and gain valuable insights into its dynamic power landscape.

Key Takeaways

  • Texans lead the nation in wind and solar energy, demonstrating remarkable growth in renewable power while reducing harmful emissions.
  • While hydroelectric and geothermal energy have minor roles in Texas’s electricity generation, they offer prospects as renewable energy sources.
  • Biomass energy is a clean, renewable power source in Texas, leveraging abundant wood resources to diversify the state’s energy mix.

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Renewable Energy in Texas 

Renowned for its fossil fuel industry, Texas is now at the forefront of renewable energy. By the end of 2022, Texas had one of the highest wind capacities and wind energy generation among all states, as the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported. However, the state’s commitment to renewable energy extends beyond wind power.

Texas is rapidly advancing in solar energy, catching up to California in solar capacity. In addition to wind and solar, hydroelectric, geothermal, and biomass power contribute to Texas’s diverse renewable energy portfolio. 

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) oversees and manages these energy sources, ensuring the reliability and stability of the state’s electric grid, which covers about 90% of Texas’s electricity supply.

Whether in Austin, Dallas, Houston, or elsewhere in Texas, you can witness the progress of sustainable energy initiatives. From towering wind turbines in Amarillo to innovative solar installations like the Samson Solar Energy Center in Red River Counties, these advancements contribute to fewer blackouts, reduced power outages, and a more resilient energy and power grid.

Texas Wind Energy Statistics 

Texas leads the way in wind energy, spearheading the development of clean and renewable power. Consider these notable wind energy achievements that solidify the state’s position as a leader:

  • According to the Department of Energy, the total wind capacity in Texas is 40,152 MW, with an additional 4,418 MW in production.
  • Wind energy accounts for 23.48% of the state’s electricity, surpassing coal and ranking second to natural gas.
  • In 2021, Texas produced nearly 26% of all wind energy generated in the United States, showcasing its pivotal role in driving clean energy solutions.
  • The wind energy industry in Texas employs over 25,000 people and contributes to investment attraction, job creation, local economic stimulation, and energy portfolio diversification.
  • Texas is the world’s fifth largest wind power generator, with over 27 gigawatts (GW) of generation capacity.

Texas Solar Energy Statistics 

Texas excels in wind energy and emerges as a frontrunner in solar energy. These compelling statistics highlight the state’s remarkable progress in solar power:

  • Texas boasts a total solar capacity of 17,247 MW, securing a second-place ranking nationwide and positioning itself as a national frontrunner in solar energy.
  • Solar energy now contributes 4.81% of Texas’s electricity generation, underscoring its growing significance in the state’s energy mix.
  • The solar industry in Texas has generated over 10,346 solar jobs and attracted substantial investments of $20.6 billion, demonstrating its economic potential and commitment to renewable energy.
  • Over the past decade, the costs of solar installations in Texas have dropped by an impressive 53%, accelerating the adoption of solar energy across the state.
  • In 2020, Texas experienced a remarkable 63% growth in small-scale solar capacity, adding 422 MW and increasing the total capacity from 670 MW in 2019 to 1,093 MW.

Texas Hydro Energy Statistics 

While hydroelectric power plays a minor role, accounting for less than 0.3% of in-state electricity generation, it indirectly supports other renewable energy sources and contributes to Texas’s overall energy landscape. Here are some statistics on hydro energy in Texas:

  • Texas has fewer than two dozen hydroelectric power plants due to flat terrain and low rainfall, limiting further hydroelectric development.
  • Abundant crude oil and natural gas wells in Texas produce billions of barrels of non-potable water annually as a byproduct, creating an opportunity for geothermal energy applications.
  • The hydroelectric power industry in Texas is experiencing a decline and is expected to fall to $47 million over the five years to 2023, while the number of industry establishments has decreased to 5 locations.
  • However, saline water, algae production, and ocean tidal wave energy hold untapped potential as non-renewable energy sources in Texas due to the state’s favorable climate and geographical characteristics.

Texas Geothermal Energy Statistics 

Geothermal energy in Texas holds tremendous potential and could significantly contribute to the state’s electric power output. Consider the following statistics:

  • A study conducted by five Texas universities, the University Land Office, and the International Energy Agency suggests that drilling 1.4 million geothermal wells globally between 2030 and 2050 could fulfill 77% of the world’s electricity demand and aid in Texas’s complete decarbonization.
  • Texas benefits from its established oil and gas industry, providing a unique advantage in expanding geothermal energy. Existing technologies offer the projected potential for 20-43% cost savings compared to other geothermal projects.
  • If Texas fully embraces geothermal energy, it has the potential to account for approximately 25% of the state’s energy grid. This estimate is based on the scalability of geothermal wells, considering the average number of wells drilled during the shale boom.

Texas Biomass Energy Statistics 

Biomass energy in Texas plays a modest role but is a key component in diversifying the state’s energy generation. Consider the following statistics that underscore the importance of biomass energy in Texas’s renewable energy mix:

  • In 2021, biomass accounted for about 0.3% of the state’s electricity generation from large-scale sources.
  • Over 2/3 of the biomass energy in Texas comes from wood or wood-derived fuels, utilizing the region’s abundant woody resources.
  • Texas operates a significant wood pellet plant that converts around 500,000 tons of wood waste annually into valuable pellets for biomass energy production.
  • Texas is a significant producer of liquid biofuels, including fuel ethanol and biodiesel, with four fuel ethanol plants in the Texas Panhandle producing 400 million gallons annually and eight biodiesel plants with a capacity of approximately 380 million gallons per year.