Americans used more renewable energy in 2016 compared to the previous year, while coal use fell and gas remained essentially flat, according to the most recent energy flow charts released by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. With prices for photovoltaic panels falling dramatically over the past decade, solar energy rose by 0.15 quads or 38 percent in 2016. Likewise, use of wind power rose by 19 percent or 0.33 quads. Coal use decreased by 9 percent to 14.2 quads, mostly due to decreased coal supply to the electricity sector. That supply has been replaced by wind, solar and natural gas. Overall, natural gas use rose by 1 percent to 28.5 quads. Overall energy use in the United States was flat.