More than 52 GW—16%—of the existing U.S. coal-fired generation fleet will be retired rather than face the cost of compliance with pending air quality regulations between 2015 and 2020, engineering and consulting firm Black & Veatch predicted in its end-of-year Energy Market Forecast.

Coal-fired power plants will provide just 25% of the nation’s power in 2035, down from 49% today. On the other hand, the firm said, renewable energy production will surge from 4% to 11%, while nuclear generation will increase from 20% to 21% in 2035.

Key findings of the forecast, which were detailed in a webinar in mid-November, also suggest that coal-fired generation retirements and other market trends will lead to an increase in the natural gas–fired generation market share from 21% to 40% in 2035. Industry will also step up installations of wind, solar, nuclear, and integrated gasification combined cycle technology with carbon capture and sequestration capabilities, Black & Veatch said.

Sources: Black and Veatch, POWERnews