There are four key components of America’s electrical energy mix, namely natural gas, nuclear power, renewables (largely wind and solar), and coal. The big picture of these four energy sources will be discussed below in decreasing order of importance. Later, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will be used as a model to improve a state’s energy mix. First, natural gas is a clear number one energy option in the country, due largely to huge gas availability, flexibility of use, low carbon emissions, and cost –effectiveness. In less than a decade, and due mostly to “fracking,” the U. S. has become the largest producer of natural gas in the world. As for flexibility, natural gas produces most of our electrical power, heats a majority of our homes and businesses, is much cleaner than coal, and is used in the creation of various petrochemicals.
- Environmentalists sparring over what could be first U.S. carbon tax
- Nations reach deal to reduce HFCs, environmental groups say