Solar has seen a 70% compound annual growth since 2010, with over 4GW installed in 2013. Indeed, preliminary numbers indicate that approximately 28% of all new US generation capacity installed in 2013 was from solar. Despite this growth, solar generation is still a small part of the overall generation mix. This holds true even for the states with the highest solar penetration.
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As distributed generation (DG) solar energy systems continue to become more accessible and affordable, increased adoption of these grid-energy reducing technologies is likely. SEIA proposes the following principles as a foundation for designing rates that properly value and enable a high penetration of DG, while recognizing the interests of utility shareholders and non-generating customers in a system with just and reasonable rates. Overall, SEIA asserts that these principles are consistent with the imperative of public utility commissions and energy service providers to maintain reliable, cost-effective service to all customers while protecting the right of customers to generate their own energy in a manner that provides many public benefits including environmental protection and economic development.
Current energy dialogue in the U.S. is centered on the solutions that reduce energy costs as well as the carbon pollution from the electricity and transportation sectors. However, a third sector is missing from this dialogue: the thermal energy that is used for heating and cooling applications.
New Mexico’s Kirtland Air Force Base installed the first active solar water heating system on an Air Force facility in December 2010. The base now captures the sun’s energy to heat the aquatic center on base.
The Genoa Township Park District is helping the environment and saving taxpayers money through the installation of a solar water heating system at the public pool.
Cogenra Solar installed an innovative solar photovoltaic electricity and water heating cogeneration system at General Hydroponics, a leading developer of hydroponic agricultural systems, nutrient formulas, and related products.
A new industrial process solar water heating system at a Gatorade beverage factory in Phoenix produces more than one million kilowatt hours of heat energy per year.
This installation of three shallow solar ponds (SSP) at Foster Alligator farms illustrates the wide range of commercial, industrial, and agricultural uses for solar water heating technology.
SunMaxx Solar installed a large solar water heating system at the Fort Hood military base in Texas.