Natural gas to lead US power mix this summer

Natural gas is due to be the largest source of electricity generation in the US this summer. That’s according to new data from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), which […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

Natural gas is due to be the largest source of electricity generation in the US this summer.

That’s according to new data from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), which projects the fuel will account for 34% of the total energy mix, down from 37% last summer but still above coal, which remains at 32%.

This contrasts with the summer of 2006, when only 25% of power came from natural gas and a much higher 46% came from coal.

It will be the third summer in a row that it has exceeded all other types of generation.

The slight drop in the proportion of power generated by gas is due to prices rising and more generation from hydropower and other renewables.

Expected milder temperatures in summer 2017 compared to 2016 mean 1.16 billion MWh of electricity is forecast to be generated in total, a 2.4% reduction from 2016.

Gas generation usually peaks on the hottest day of the year to meet power demand for the increased use of air conditioning.