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As Trump promises to 'cancel job-killing' energy red tape, US renewables grow

Danita Delimont | Gallo Images | Getty Images

In a week where President-elect Donald Trump said he would "cancel job-killing restrictions on the production of American energy, including shale energy and clean coal", figures have shown that renewables are becoming an increasingly important part of the U.S. energy mix.

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory's (NREL) 2015 Renewable Energy Data Book, released earlier this week, showed that renewable electricity in the U.S. increased to 16.7 percent of total installed capacity and 13.8 percent of total electricity generation.

The NREL also said that renewable electricity represented 64 percent of electricity capacity additions in 2015, compared to 52 percent the year before, while "renewable electricity generation" grew by 2.4 percent. Electricity generation from solar increased by 35.8 percent, while wind electricity generation rose by 5.1 percent.

"Since it was first released in 2009, the Renewable Energy Data Book has provided useful insights for policymakers, analysts, and investors," Philipp Beiter, NREL energy analyst, said in a statement.

"The 2015 version of the data book highlights the ongoing trend of growing renewable energy capacity and generation in the United States and globally," Beiter added.

President-elect Trump's views on the environment and climate change are being examined in minute detail following his victory in the U.S. presidential election earlier this month.

In 2012, he tweeted that the concept of global warming "was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive."

Earlier this week, however, he was asked by the New York Times whether he thought human activity was connected to climate change. Trump responded by saying he thought there was "some connectivity. There is some, something."