U.S. Electricity Net Generation and Carbon Dioxide Emissions, 1990-2018

Explore electricity net generation by source, share of renewable electricity, and carbon dioxide emissions per capita for every state in the United States over a 29-year period from 1990 to 2018.

Dashboard published October 29, 2019 using the most recent data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Emissions data are only available up to 2017.

Data Definitions

Fossil Fuels: An energy source formed in the Earth’s crust from decayed organic material.

+ Coal:  A readily combustible black or brownish-black rock whose composition, including inherent moisture, consists of more than 50 percent by weight and more than 70 percent by volume of carbonaceous material. It is formed from plant remains that have been compacted, hardened, chemically altered, and metamorphosed by heat and pressure over geologic time. Coal includes anthracite, bituminous coal, subbituminous coal, lignite, waste coal, and synthetic coal.

+ Natural Gas: A gaseous mixture of hydrocarbon compounds, the primary one being methane.

+ Petroleum:  A broadly defined class of liquid hydrocarbon mixtures. Included are crude oil, lease condensate, unfinished oils, refined products obtained from the processing of crude oil, and natural gas plant liquids. Note: Volumes of finished petroleum products include non-hydrocarbon compounds, such as additives and detergents, after they have been blended into the products. Petroleum includes distillate fuel oil (all diesel and No. 1, No. 2, and No. 4 fuel oils), residual fuel oil (No. 5 and No. 6 fuel oils and bunker C fuel oil), jet fuel, kerosene, petroleum coke, and waste oil.

+ Other Gases: Includes blast furnace gas, propane gas, and other manufactured and waste gases derived from fossil fuels.

Renewable: Energy resources that are naturally replenishing but flow-limited. They are virtually inexhaustible in duration but limited in the amount of energy that is available per unit of time.

+ Hydroelectric Conventional: The use of flowing water to produce electrical energy.

+ Geothermal: Hot water or steam extracted from geothermalreservoirs in the earth’s crust. Water or steam extracted from geothermal reservoirs can be used for geothermal heat pumps, water heating, or electricity generation.

+ Wind: Kinetic energy present in windmotion that can be converted to mechanical energy for driving pumps, mills, and electric power generators.

+ Solar Thermal and Photovoltaic: Energy radiated by the sun as electromagnetic waves (electromagnetic radiation) that is converted at electric utilities into electricity by means of solar (photovoltaic) cells or concentrating (focusing) collectors.

+ Other Biomass: Organic nonfossil material of biological origin constituting a renewable energy source. Includes biogenic municipal solid waste, landfill gas, sludge waste, agricultural byproducts, other biomass solids, other biomass liquids, and other biomass gases (including digester gases and methane).

+ Wood and Wood Derived Fuels: Wood and products derived from wood that are used as a fuel, including round wood (cord wood), limb wood, wood chips, bark, sawdust, forest residues, charcoal, paper pellets, railroad ties, utility poles, black liquor, red liquor, sludge wood, spent sulfite liquor, densified biomass (which includes wood pellets), and other wood-based solids and liquids.

Nuclear: Electricity generated by the use of the thermal energy released from the fission of nuclear fuel in a reactor.


+ Pumped-Storage Hydroelectric: A plant that usually generates electric energy during peak load periods by using water previously pumped into an elevated storage reservoir during off-peak periods when excess generating capacity is available to do so. When additional generating capacity is needed, the water can be released from the reservoir through a conduit to turbine generators located in a power plant at a lower level.

+ Other: Other includes non-biogenic municipal solid waste, batteries, chemicals, hydrogen, pitch, purchased steam, sulfur, tire-derived fuels, and miscellaneous technologies.