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US Renewable Energy Production Now Tops Nuclear Power

The Plant Vogtle nuclear power plant shown under construction in Augusta, Ga.

The Plant Vogtle nuclear power plant shown under construction in Augusta, Ga. // John Bazemore/AP File Photo

US president Barack Obama has pursued an energy policy he describes as “all of the above,” a bit of Bill Clinton-style triangulation that seeks to boost production from carbon-intensive oil and gas drilling while promoting clean technologies like solar and wind.

So how’s he doing?

New data released yesterday from the US Energy Information Administration offers a snapshot of the energy landscape in Obama’s first term.

Energy production from natural gas grew 16% while coal-fired power fell more than 4%, thanks to a glut of cheap natural gas from the fracking boom. It’s a trend likely to continue as shale gas reserves are tapped and new emissions regulations effectively bar the construction of new coal-fired power plants.

Renewable energy production jumped nearly 24% but remains only 11% of the US’ total energy production. But the trend lines tell the story: Wind energy, for instance, grew 89% while electricity production from nuclear power plants fell 4%.

Read more at Quartz

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