Solar energy can account for 40% of U.S. electricity by 2035- DOE

Democratic 2020 U.S. presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden walks past solar panels while touring the Plymouth Area Renewable Energy Initiative in Plymouth, New Hampshire, U.S., June 4, 2019. REUTERS/Brian Snyder//File Photo/File Photo

WASHINGTON, Sept 8 (Reuters) – The Biden administration on Wednesday released a report showing that the United States can get 40% of its electricity from solar energy by 2035 – a significant ramp up from its current share of generation.

The Solar Futures Study outlines how solar energy can help decarbonize the U.S. power grid and help achieve a Biden administration goal of achieving net zero emissions in the electricity sector by 2035.

“The study illuminates the fact that solar, our cheapest and fastest-growing source of clean energy, could produce enough electricity to power all of the homes in the U.S. by 2035 and employ as many as 1.5 million people in the process,” Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm said in a statement.

The report lays out several steps the United States should take to achieve the 40% target, including installing 30 gigawatts per year of solar capacity between now and 2025 and 60 GW a year between 2025 and 2030.

It also calls for the deployment of tools to help expand the transmission of solar energy across the country such as storage, microgrids and forecasting, which will plya a “role in maintaining the reliability and performance of a renewable-dominant grid,” according to the Department of Energy.

The administration is ramping up efforts to expand renewable energy across the country.

Late last month, the Interior Department announced it would begin a process to ensure easier access to vast federal lands for solar and wind energy, a move that underscored the renewable energy industry’s voracious need for new acreage.

Biden’s goal to decarbonize the power sector by 2035 would require an area bigger than the Netherlands for the solar industry alone, according to research firm Rystad Energy.

Reporting by Susan Heavey

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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