Coal, gas or wind? Here’s the energy mix for 2019
Curious as to what kind of electricity is powering your home? ERCOT published its 2019 Fuel Mix Report that shows what type of generation (coal, gas, nuclear, wind, solar, hydro, etc.) was pushing electrons around the grid for each 15-minute interval.
And the winner?
- 47% of energy came from gas (40% from combined cycle plants, which are more efficient and used for baseload and 7% from peaker plants, which only come on when demand/price is high)
- 20% from coal
- 20% from wind
- 11% from nuclear
- 2% from other (1.15% from solar; 0.11% from biomass; and 0.01% from hydro)
Here you can see the actual volume of fuel source for each month.
Here you can see a breakdown of fuel source as a percentage of total generation for each month.
The Green Energy Hoax
While a lot of plans out there are selling you 100% wind or solar plans, they aren’t actually 100% green. Even if you are paying the premium, the energy mix above is what actually powered your home last year. (Unless, of course, you have your own solar panels and battery hookup where you store all of the solar you generated in the day to be used later. In that case, awesome!)
Retail energy providers rely on these things called RECs – and your desire to do better for the environment – to sell 100% green. RECS are renewable energy credits that companies buy to go toward creating and support more renewable energy sources. Which in itself is great, until you see how much they mark up the price. Cheap, wind RECs can be bought from 14¢-20¢, only costing the company $1.40 - $2.00 per year to provide – though the customer will be paying a much higher price.
While consumers can’t do much about the energy mix on the grid, they can help shift their usage away from the dirtier sources. With Griddy’s price signals, we let consumers know when to shift their energy use to times when the renewable power supply is high. This does more than just put money towards green energy – it helps increase demand for it, and therefore, encourages more to come online.