The land required for each kind of power plant to generate a gigawatt hour (GWh) of electricity

Land required for generating electricity

Land useElectricity generated over 75 years (GWh)Acres per GWh per yearReclamation options
Solar25.008.33 (perpetual)Remove panels and dual-use
Nuclear (mining)16.6616.66 (only once)Very high cost (radioactive)
Coal (mining)11.1111.11 (only once)Costly (<1% reclaimed)
Wind2.9026 (perpetual)Remove turbines and dual-use
Hydro2.5030 (perpetual)Drain dam + restoration
Biomass0.40188 (perpetual)Replant trees

(Download the full spreadsheet here: (coming later – for now download from embedded spreadsheet))

Each type of land has its own sources and analysis. Here they are:

This data is used in the article: When it comes to land impact, does solar, wind, nuclear, coal, or natural gas have the smallest footprint?

Code: m129 GWhLandComp math xbMath