Monday, February 25, 2019

U.S. EIA: Carbon Dioxide Emissions To Decline By 1.3% In 2019; After Increasing 2.8% In 2018 Driven By Natural Gas

On February 25, the U.S. Energy Information Administration Short-Term Energy Outlook estimated carbon dioxide emissions from energy generation will decline by 1.3 percent in 2019 and 0.5 percent in 2020 after increasing by 2.8 percent in 2018.
U.S. EIA said the 2018 increase largely reflects increased weather-related natural gas consumption because of additional heating needs during a colder winter and for additional electric generation to support more cooling during a warmer summer than in 2017.
EIA expects emissions to decline in 2019 and 2020 because of forecasted temperatures that will return to near normal and noted energy-related CO2 emissions are sensitive to changes in weather, economic growth, energy prices, and fuel mix.
Fuel Mix Changes
EIA expects the share of U.S. total utility-scale electricity generation from natural gas-fired power plants to rise from 35 percent in 2018 to 36 percent in 2019 and to 37 percent in 2020.
EIA forecasts that the electricity generation share from coal will average 26 percent in 2019 and 24 percent in 2020, down from 28 percent in 2018.
The nuclear share of generation was 19 percent in 2018 and EIA forecasts that it will stay near that level in 2019 and in 2020.
The generation share of hydropower is forecast to average slightly less than 7 percent of total generation in 2019 and 2020, similar to last year.
Wind, solar, and other nonhydropower renewables together provided about 10 percent of electricity generation in 2018. EIA expects them to provide 11 percent in 2019 and 13 percent in 2020.
EIA expects average U.S. solar generation will rise from 265,000 megawatthours per day (MWh/d) in 2018 to 301,000 MWh/d in 2019 (an increase of 14 percent) and to 358,000 MWh/d in 2020 (an increase of 19 percent).
In 2019, EIA expects wind’s annual share of generation will exceed hydropower’s share for the first time. EIA forecasts that wind generation will rise from 756,000 MWh/d in 2018 to 859,000 MWh/d in 2019 (a share of 8 percent). Wind generation is further projected to rise to 964,000 MWh/d (a share of 9 percent) by 2020.
EIA estimates that U.S. coal production declined by 21 million short tons (MMst) (3 percent) in 2018, totaling 754 MMst. EIA expects further declines in coal production of 4 percent in 2019 and 6 percent in 2020 because of falling power sector consumption and declines in coal exports.
Coal consumed for electricity generation declined by an estimated 4 percent (27 MMst) in 2018. EIA expects that lower electricity demand, lower natural gas prices, and further retirements of coal-fired capacity will reduce coal consumed for electricity generation by 8 percent in 2019 and by a further 6 percent in 2020.
Coal exports, which increased by 20 percent (19 MMst) in 2018, decline by 13 percent and 8 percent in 2019 and 2020, respectively, in the forecast.
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