South Carolina and the Energy Consumer
South Carolina’s public energy roots trace back at least to 1846 with the Charleston Gas Light Company. It was the United States Electric illuminating Company of Charleston that was the first electric central station for incandescent lighting in October 1882, a month after Thomas Edison opened his Pearl Street plant in New York City.
- Natural gas deliveries to South Carolina’s electric power sector have more than doubled in the past decade, increasing from 74.3 billion cubic feet of natural gas in 2009 to 186.3 billion cubic feet in 2019.
- South Carolina’s per capita natural gas consumption ranks among the lowest one-third of the states. About one in four households in the states rely on natural gas for heating.
- South Carolina’s four nuclear power plants supplied slightly more than half of the state’s electricity net generation in 2019, and the state was the third-largest generator of nuclear power in the nation.
- South Carolina’s industrial sector is the largest end-use energy sector and accounts for about one-third of the state’s total energy consumption.
- South Carolina ranks among the top one-fourth of the states in retail sales of electricity per capita, and more than 70% of state households heat with electricity.
Energy Consumers of the Carolinas devotes this space to issues in South Carolina: Observations, questions, and viewpoints from people across a spectrum of energy and consumer interests.