In the United States, nearly half of our electricity is produced by coal-fired power plants. This method of generating electricity is both polluting and inherently inefficient, converting only about a third of potential energy into usable power. The rest of the energy is lost in the form of excess heat and during the transmission process — often thousands of miles from the point of generation to the point of use.
It’s no surprise that concern is growing over the long-term environmental, security, and economic risks posed by climate change and an aging and overloaded transmission grid. In addition, there is now a call to begin replacing conventional power generation and grid distribution with “cleaner” forms of energy and to produce power more closely to where it is consumed.