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Short-Term Energy Outlook

Release Date: March 6, 2018  |  Next Release Date: April 10, 2018  |  Full Report    |   Text Only   |   All Tables   |   All Figures


  • EIA expects the share of U.S. total utility-scale electricity generation from natural gas-fired power plants to rise from 32% in 2017 to 34% in both 2018 and 2019. The forecast generation share from coal in both 2018 and 2019 averages 29%, down from 30% in 2017. The nuclear share of generation was 20% in 2017 and is forecast to average 20% in 2018 and 19% in 2019. Nonhydropower renewables provided slightly less than 10% of electricity generation in 2017 and are expected to provide 10% in 2018 and nearly 11% in 2019. The generation share of hydropower was over 7% in 2017 and is forecast to fall below 7% in both 2018 and 2019.
  • Total solar electricity generation averaged an estimated 211,000 MWh/d in 2017. EIA projects that it will reach 246,000 MWh/d in 2018 and 294,000 MWh/d in 2019.
U.S. Electricity Summary
Retail Prices (cents per kilowatthour)
Residential Sector 12.5512.9013.1713.57
Commercial Sector 10.4310.6810.9010.97
Industrial Sector 6.766.917.107.18
Power Generation Fuel Costs (dollars per million Btu)
Natural Gas 2.873.393.413.43
Residual Fuel Oil 8.4610.6812.0011.71
Distillate Fuel Oil 10.8413.3215.4714.93
Generation (billion kWh per day)
Coal 3.3863.3093.1993.223
Natural Gas 3.7663.4873.7843.865
Nuclear 2.2012.2052.1902.140
Conventional Hydroelectric 0.7320.8220.7630.747
Renewable (non-hydroelectric) 0.9331.0611.1101.201
Total Generation 11.13910.99911.17511.301
Retail Sales (billion kWh per day)
Residential Sector 3.863.783.913.93
Commercial Sector 3.743.703.733.75
Industrial Sector 2.672.592.642.66
Total Retail Sales 10.2810.0910.3010.36
Primary Assumptions (percent change from previous year)
Real DIsposable Personal Income
Manufacturing Production Index
Cooling Degree Days 4.7-8.6-2.2-1.2
Heating Degree Days -5.1-
Number of Households

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