By Mariecor Agravante
Last year marked the first time renewables outpaced coal-fired electricity generation. This led to IEEFA forecasts of renewables eclipsing coal by 2021. Unexpectedly, this year’s COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated renewable energy‘s first-quarter performance in producing electricity. Hence, EIA forecasts expect electric power generated by coal “will fall by 25% in 2020.”
Interestingly, Forbes notes that “The electric power sector consistently sees its lowest coal demand in April,” owing to seasonal temperature adjustments when winter transitions into springtime. Because of the change in season, natural gas and coal generators often “schedule routine maintenance for the spring…and many coal plants spen[d] part of April offline for planned, temporary outages.” This illustrates why wind generation is typically relied upon most in springtime. As for hydropower, snowmelt often feeds rivers, thus accounting for increased electricity generation downstream each spring as well, Forbes explains.
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