Special Report

This Is How Much Renewable Energy Your State Produces

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30. Wisconsin
> Electricity from renewables: 9.4% of total (5.9 million MWh)
> Largest renewable energy source: Hydroelectric conventional (2.6 million MWh)
> Largest non-renewable energy source: Coal (26.3 million MWh)
> 10-yr. change in share of renewable energy: +3.2 ppt. (20th lowest)

Wisconsin is one of 21 states that gets less than a 10th of its total electricity from renewable sources. The state’s renewable energy supply includes several sources — 4.2% of the state’s energy production comes from hydroelectric, 3.0% from wind sources, 1.3% from wood fuel, and 0.8% from other biomass sources.

Though the use of coal power has waned in Wisconsin and the U.S. in recent years. Still, it remains as the largest source of electricity in the state, accounting for 26.3 million MWh, or 42.0%, of the state’s total electricity production.

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29. Alabama
> Electricity from renewables: 10.6% of total (15.1 million MWh)
> Largest renewable energy source: Hydroelectric conventional (11.4 million MWh)
> Largest non-renewable energy source: Natural gas (57.2 million MWh)
> 10-yr. change in share of renewable energy: -0.3 ppt. (9th lowest)

Despite being the 24th most populous state, Alabama produces the sixth most electricity, at 142.7 million MWh. This is due in part to the fact that the state’s large industrial sector requires a significant amount of power. The state ranks in the top 10 states for hydroelectric, wood-derived, natural gas, and nuclear energy electricity production.

In Alabama, 10.6% of the state’s electricity comes from renewable sources, lower than the majority of other states. Some 8.0% comes from hydroelectric sources, 2.3% from wood and wood-derived fuels, and 0.3% from solar thermal and photovoltaic sources.

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28. Arizona
> Electricity from renewables: 10.8% of total (12.3 million MWh)
> Largest renewable energy source: Hydroelectric conventional (6.2 million MWh)
> Largest non-renewable energy source: Natural gas (46.1 million MWh)
> 10-yr. change in share of renewable energy: +4.9 ppt. (23rd highest)

Renewable energy sources in Arizona accounted for 10.8% of electricity production in 2019. Nearly all renewable energy in the state comes from one of two sources: hydroelectric power plants and solar energy farms. One of the top solar energy producers in the nation, the state has a solar thermal power plant in Maricopa County and is also home to the nation’s largest solar PV plant in Yuma County. Additionally, the Glen Canyon Dam and the Hoover Dam on the Colorado River in northern Arizona are major producers of hydroelectricity.

The largest sources of electricity in Arizona are not renewable, however. In 2019, natural gas-burning plants supplied 40.6% of electricity produced in the state, and coal-burning power plants generated 20.4%.

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27. Utah
> Electricity from renewables: 10.9% of total (4.3 million MWh)
> Largest renewable energy source: Solar thermal and photovoltaic (2.2 million MWh)
> Largest non-renewable energy source: Coal (25.2 million MWh)
> 10-yr. change in share of renewable energy: +7.9 ppt. (17th highest)

Utah is one of just six states where solar thermal and voltaic sources account for a larger share of renewable energy sources than all others, at 5.6% of its total electricity production — the fifth highest share of all states. Hydroelectric and wind sources each supply more than 2% of the state’s energy

Utah produces more energy than it consumes, and sells some of its electricity to neighboring states. Though Utah accounts for just 2% of the nation’s coal production, coal provides 64.5% of the state’s electricity — a larger share than all but four other states.

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26. Hawaii
> Electricity from renewables: 12.1% of total (1.2 million MWh)
> Largest renewable energy source: Wind (529,310 MWh)
> Largest non-renewable energy source: Petroleum (6.9 million MWh)
> 10-yr. change in share of renewable energy: +4.7 ppt. (24th highest)

Hawaii is by far the most petroleum-dependent state in the U.S. Over 70% of the state’s electricity comes from petroleum — no other state gets even 15% of electricity from that source. Located in the Pacific Ocean, the state must import the petroleum, making its electricity prices much higher than those of any other state.

However, Hawaii’s location does provide some advantages. The state has relatively high shares of its electricity supply coming from biomass sources, at 3.0%, and solar thermal and voltaic sources, at 2.8%. Hawaii also gets 5.4% of its electricity from wind sources.