Texas Can Be Free of Coal, Study Finds

Texas could meet a significant portion of its electricity demand from renewable power without investing much into extensive battery storage.

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Texas is the state from where the USA started its journey of oil, turns out it is also the place where wind and solar energy can provide power round the clock, a new research has found.

Researchers from Rice University have determined that between wind energy from West Texas and the Gulf Coast, and solar energy across the state, Texas could meet a significant portion of its electricity demand from renewable power without extensive battery storage.

“We found that solar and wind resources exhibit complementary peaks in production on an annual and daily level and that West and South Texas wind resources also exhibit complementarity. Pairings of West Texas wind with solar power or South Texas wind sites yield the highest firm capacity,” the research paper authored by Joanna H Slusarewicz and Daniel S Cohan revealed.

It further said that, “Solar farms are better suited for providing power during summertime hours of peak demand, whereas wind farms are better for winter. Taken together, our results suggest that Texas renewable power production can be made more reliable by combining resources of diferent types and locations.”

“There is no where else in the world better positioned to operate without coal than Texas is,” said Dan Cohan, an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at Rice University. “Wind and solar are easily capable of picking up the slack.”

Texas has the highest installed wind capacity in the USA with 18% of its electricity needs coming from wind energy.

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