Colorado earns B on renewable energy report card
Colorado earned a B on a new report card that assigns letter grades to states based on their renewable energy patterns.
Colorado ranked exactly in the middle among the 50 states in terms of renewable energy generation per capita. But Colorado ranked 13th for growth in renewable energy generation over a three-year period.
EnergyTrends.org, a Web site established by the Lexington Institute, offers the letter grades to states as well as a host of other information about energy production and use.
“American’s awareness and understanding of energy seem to be increasing, but major changes in energy consumption don’t happen overnight,” said Don Soifer, executive vice president of the Lexington Institute, a think tank based in Arlington, Va.
“It is our hope that the information on EnergyTrends.org will be useful for everyone from schools to elected officials to keep track of their state’s critical energy consumption and generation patterns,” Soifer added.
The letter grades and other information is based on 2010 data, the most recent released by the Energy Department.
For 2010, Colorado generated a little more than one-thousandth of a kilowatt-hour of electricity from renewable energy sources per capita. Washington ranked first with a little more than one-hundredth of a kilowatt-hour per capita, while Ohio and New Jersey came in last at one-ten thousandth of a kilowatt-hour per capita.
A kilowatt-hour is unit of energy equal to 1 kilowatt expended for one hour. The average U.S. household uses about 8,900 kilowatt-hours of electricity a year.
Between 2007 and 2010, renewable energy generation increased 68 percent in Colorado, 13th most among the 50 states. Indiana experienced the largest proportional gain at 443 percent, while renewable energy production decreased 9 percent in Rhode Island and Washington.
Colorado ranked 20th in terms of incremental electric savings as a percentage of electricity sales.
EnergyTrend.org also offers a look at per capita consumption of energy and various fuels in the 50 states in 2010.
Colorado residents consumed the 31st highest amount of energy per person nationwide. The state ranked highest at 11th in per capita consumption of natural gas and 24th in per capita consumption of coal. Colorado ranked 36th for per capita consumption of petroleum and 37th for gasoline.