Clean Energy Potential in the U.S. Southeast
In its Southeast Regional Clean Energy Policy Analysis, NREL estimates the clean energy potential in the region. Key findings include the following:
- The region is rich in untapped biomass resources, including residues from forests, agriculture, mills, and urban waste. If fully utilized, biomass residues have the potential to fuel more than six times the current electricity demand of the region. There is also good potential for growing dedicated energy crops, such as switchgrass and short-rotation wood crops.
- Missouri has excellent onshore wind potential. Louisiana has some of the best offshore wind resources in the country. The Carolinas also have excellent offshore wind potential.
- All of the states in the region have sufficient solar resources to produce distributed power from photovoltaic technology.
- The region has a high density of energy-intensive commercial and industrial facilities suitable for combined heat and power technologies.
- There are opportunities for methane-to-energy and small hydroelectric development in every state in the region. Most of the states in Southeast have the potential to produce 1-2 GW of additional capacity of small and low power hydroelectricity.
For clean energy potential by state, see the state-specific findings.
For more information, see the full report, Southeast Regional Clean Energy Policy Analysis.