To align to a 1.5°C compatible pathway, the share of renewable energy in the US power mix would need to ramp up from 17% in 2017 to 77-93% by 2030, and 98-100% by 2050.
Early decarbonisation of the power sector will be necessary to close the emissions gap in 2030, requiring a reduction in carbon intensity from around 430 gCO2/kWh in 2017 to 30-50 gCO2/kWh by 2030.
Phasing out coal by 2029 and gas by 2038-2039, respectively will enable the required transformation. Considering the long lifetimes and decreasing competitiveness of coal and gas power plants, delaying decarbonisation comes with significant risks of stranded assets to investors, as well as risks to society of locking in high-cost, high-emission technologies.
Key power sector benchmarks
Renewables shares and year of zero emissions power Including the use of BECCS
- 2030 77 to 93% Renewable share
- 2035 Zero emissions power
- 2036 Zero emissions power
- 2040 96 to 100% Renewable share