Grand Canyon State Moving Toward Zero-Carbon Emissions

The population of the “Grand Canyon State,” Arizona is approximately 7.29 million people. In March 2020, state utilities used nuclear energy (39.3%), natural gas (38.1%), renewable energy (14.0%) and coal (8.6%) to generate electricity. Solar and hydropower are the primary sources of renewable energy in Arizona.

Arizona’s use of inexpensive natural gas and renewable energy offsets the high cost of nuclear energy and coal. In March 2020, the average cost of electricity in Arizona was 12.2 ¢ per kWh, compared to the national average of 13.1 ¢ per kWh.

Arizona is one of 30 states with a Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). The Arizona Corporation Commission requires that all state utilities generate at least 15% of their electricity from renewable energy by 2025. The state’s largest utility, Arizona Public Service (APS) has now announced plans to achieve zero-carbon emissions by 2050.

APS’s plan to achieve zero-carbon emissions starts by adding over 960 MW capacity of electrical power from new solar parks and wind farms, coupled with 850 MW capacity of energy storage systems by 2024. APS anticipates generating at least 45% of the utility’s electricity from renewable energy by 2030.

APS currently operates the Palo Verde Generating Station, which is the largest nuclear power plant in the United States. The nuclear power plant, which has over 3,900 MW capacity, emits no greenhouse gases. In 2030, APS anticipates that over 65% of the utility’s power will emit zero greenhouse gases.

In 2005, coal-fired power plants were the primary source of electricity in Arizona. Responsible state legislators and utilities have put the state on a path toward clean, green, cost-effective energy.

 

Jack Kerfoot

Website – “Our Energy Conundrum”

www.jackkerfoot.com

 

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