U.S.: Nuclear Energy Production Volume, by state
StatePower generated,
in gigawatt-hours
South CarolinaSouth Carolina54,370
North CarolinaNorth Carolina42,644
  • Region: United States
  • Time period: 2022
  • Published: Mar 2023

Data Analysis and Insights

Updated: Apr 13, 2024 | Published by: Statistico | About Us / Data / Analysis

Illinois leads in nuclear energy production

Illinois stands out as the leading state for nuclear energy production in the U.S., generating a substantial 98,870 gigawatt-hours. This figure not only places Illinois at the top but also emphasizes the state's significant contribution to the country's nuclear energy sector.

Top three states contribute over 50% of nuclear power

Together, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina generate over 229,406 gigawatt-hours of nuclear power, accounting for more than half of the total production from the top ten states. This consolidation highlights the critical role these states play in the U.S. nuclear energy landscape.

The gap between top producers

The production gap between the highest (Illinois with 98,870 gigawatt-hours) and the lowest (Florida with 30,768 gigawatt-hours) among the top ten states underscores the varying capacities and contributions across regions. This disparity reveals the diverse state of nuclear energy production in the U.S.

Nuclear power's regional prominence

States from the South and the Midwest dominate the list of top nuclear energy producers, with each region having significant representations. This geographic distribution underscores the regional importance of nuclear energy in these areas of the U.S.

Tight competition in the middle tier

A narrow margin separates the nuclear power generation of states in the middle tier, such as Alabama with 42,314 gigawatt-hours and Texas with 41,607 gigawatt-hours. This close competition indicates a relatively dense cluster of nuclear production capabilities within this group.

Nuclear energy's significant role in energy mix

The combined nuclear power generation from these ten states totals over 433,391 gigawatt-hours, underscoring nuclear energy's substantial role in the U.S. energy mix and its contribution to meeting the country's electricity demand.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which state leads in nuclear energy production in the U.S.?

Illinois leads in nuclear energy production in the U.S, generating 98,870 gigawatt-hours.

Which three states contribute over half of the nuclear power production?

Illinois, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina together generate over 229,406 gigawatt-hours of nuclear power, accounting for more than half of the total production from the top ten states.

Terms and Definitions

Nuclear energy is the energy generated from nuclear reactions such as fission, fusion, and decay. The most common form used in the production of electricity is nuclear fission, which involves splitting the nuclei of atoms, typically uranium or plutonium, to release large amounts of energy in the form of heat.

Fission is a nuclear process where a heavy nucleus, such as that of uranium or plutonium, splits into two or more smaller nuclei, along with some by-products. This process releases a massive amount of energy and is the fundamental reaction in nuclear power plants.

Uranium is a naturally occurring radioactive element and one of the most commonly used fuels in nuclear power plants. It is used to induce nuclear fission, where its nucleus is split to release energy.

Plutonium is a radioactive metal that is produced in a nuclear reactor from uranium. It is also used as a nuclear fuel because its atoms can be split to release a large amount of energy.

A Megawatt-hour (MWh) is a unit of energy equivalent to the power generated by one million watts in one hour. It is commonly used for measuring large quantities of electricity, such as produced by power plants.

A Gigawatt-hour (GWh) is a unit of energy equivalent to the power generated by one billion watts in one hour. It is used to represent the output of large power plants or the total amount of electricity consumed by a large population over a specific period.

A nuclear reactor is a technological device designed to maintain a chain reaction producing a steady flow of neutrons generated by the nuclear fission of various isotopes of uranium, plutonium, or other nuclear fuels. The produced energy is primarily used for electricity generation.
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