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February 6, 2023

More than half of new U.S. electric-generating capacity in 2023 will be solar

U.S. planned utility-scale electric capacity additions
Data source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Preliminary Monthly Electric Generator Inventory, December 2022

Reposted to correct the planned capacity of Guernsey Power Station.

Developers plan to add 54.5 gigawatts (GW) of new utility-scale electric-generating capacity to the U.S. power grid in 2023, according to our Preliminary Monthly Electric Generator Inventory. More than half of this capacity will be solar power (54%), followed by battery storage (17%).

Solar. U.S. utility-scale solar capacity has been rising rapidly since 2010. Despite its upward trend over the past decade, additions of utility-scale solar capacity declined by 23% in 2022 compared with 2021. This drop in solar capacity additions was the result of supply chain disruptions and other pandemic-related challenges. We expect that some of those delayed 2022 projects will begin operating in 2023, when developers plan to install 29.1 GW of solar power in the United States. If all of this capacity comes online as planned, 2023 will have the most new utility-scale solar capacity added in a single year, more than doubling the current record (13.4 GW in 2021).

In 2023, the most new solar capacity, by far, will be in Texas (7.7 GW) and California (4.2 GW), together accounting for 41% of planned new solar capacity.

Battery storage. U.S. battery storage capacity has grown rapidly over the past couple of years. In 2023, U.S. battery capacity will likely more than double. Developers have reported plans to add 9.4 GW of battery storage to the existing 8.8 GW of battery storage capacity.

Battery storage systems are increasingly installed with wind and solar power projects. Wind and solar are intermittent sources of generation; they only produce electricity when the wind is blowing or the sun is shining. Batteries can store excess electricity from wind and solar generators for later use. In 2023, we expect 71% of the new battery storage capacity will be in California and Texas, states with significant solar and wind capacity.

Natural gas. Developers plan to build 7.5 GW of new natural-gas fired capacity in 2023, 83% of which is from combined-cycle plants. The two largest natural gas plants expected to come online in 2023 are the 1,836 megawatt (MW) Guernsey Power Station in Ohio and the 1,214 MW CPV Three Rivers Energy Center in Illinois.

planned 2023 utility-scale electric generator additions
Data source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Preliminary Monthly Electric Generator Inventory, December 2022

Wind. In 2023, developers plan to add 6.0 GW of utility-scale wind capacity. Annual U.S. wind capacity additions have begun to slow, following record additions of more than 14 GW in both 2020 and 2021.

The most wind capacity will be added in Texas in 2023, at 2.0 GW. The only offshore wind capacity expected to come online this year is a 130.0 MW offshore windfarm in New York called South Fork Wind.

Nuclear. Two new nuclear reactors at the Vogtle nuclear power plant in Georgia are scheduled to come online in 2023, several years later than originally planned. The reactors, with a combined 2.2 GW of capacity, are the first new nuclear units built in the United States in more than 30 years.

Developers and power plant owners report planned additions to us in our annual and monthly electric generator surveys. In the annual survey, we ask respondents to provide planned online dates for generators coming online in the next five years. The monthly survey tracks the status of generators coming online based on reported in-service dates.

Principal contributors: Elesia Fasching, Suparna Ray