Fun Earth Day Fact: Renewable Energy Was Just 7.8% Of American Power Last Year, And That's Down From…1949


Earth Day is tomorrow, and here’s something that might blow your mind as you read the stories about our allegedly impending global warming apocalypse and the efforts to head it off.

“Renewable energy (including hydropower) provided only 7.8% of energy consumed in the US last year,” writesUniversity of Michigan Professor of Economics Mark Perry. “That was less than the 9.3% share of renewables in 1949, according to the Department of Energy.”

And he’s got a chart showing past comparison between fossil fuels and renewables along with projections for future use (the gap in the percentages is mostly nuclear, which is neither considered a renewable energy source nor a fossil fuel).



Most of the renewable energy in 1949 was hydropower, but that’s fallen out of favor with greenies these days who don’t like the idea of damming rivers and flooding areas. Still, it’s remarkable to see “green energy” a smaller percentage of the American power grid than it was during the Truman administration.

And that despite no small amount of government “investment” and subsidy.

I wonder how small the percentage of renewables would be if we weren’t propping up wind, solar and biofuels with government subsidies and mandates?

Almost non-existent. I’d be willing to put money on it.

Meanwhile, “Biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than gasoline for global warming in the short term, a study shows, challenging the Obama administration’s conclusions that they are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help combat climate change.”