Harnessing Renewable Energy Sources in Texas

By energy_linguist, November 11, 2009, Energy Efficiency

Moving forward on our quest to examine the potential for renewable energy in Texas, it’s certainly worth mentioning that an estimated level of renewable energy, generated from biomass, wind and solar resources,  could equal
nearly 4,330 quadrillion (4,330,000,000,000,000,000) British Thermal
Units (BTUs), a mind boggling 400 times greater than the entire state’s annual energy

So how are we harnessing this potential in Texas?

Electric generation companies in Texas are required by the Texas Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard (RPS) to steadily increase their production of clean
energy to reach the goal of 10,000 MW in the state’s overall energy portfolio by 2025. A tall order on the surface, but in reality quite achievable considering the level of renewable energy sources untapped across Texas.

Texas renewable energy is commonly generated from the following sources:

  • Wind – Texas is the top wind power producing state in in the U.S., including the country’s largest wind farm in the
    Horse Hollow Wind Energy Center, as well as nearly 8,000 MW of installed
    wind energy capacity to date.
  • Solar – The West and North Texas regions have huge
    potential for solar energy. It is speculated that Texas actually contains the the highest
    potential for wide-scale solar energy of any state in the nation. This can be attributed to the levels of direct solar radiation that could support solar power plants for wide-scale deployment across Texas.
  • Biomass – Texas biomass is produced via wood, waste or alcohol fuels, landfill gases, cattle
    manure and other forms of organic waste. Texas is the second leading
    agricultural producing state in the U.S., so naturally biomass is one of the most readily available domestic resources of
    renewable energy.
  • Hydroelectric – Hydroelectric power in Texas is typically generated using dammed water that is then passed through turbines and generators to
    produce electricity. Hydroelectric power holds the lowest potential impact for Texas renewable energy, though the state does utilize saline water and ocean energy to generate a portion of its renewable energy portfolio with hydro power.

The potential in Texas for greener energy is present, but the challenge is  determining an efficient, cost effective and sustainable manner of updating an antiquated electric grid to accommodate clean energy production. Obviously the challenge of creating or harnessing renewable energy is not as daunting as getting it from source to Texas businesses and homes.

Be Sociable, Share!

Related Posts

Tags: ,

Comments are closed.