The advent of net metering has spurred growth in the PV market by allowing PV users to sell excess electricity back to the grid at retail price. This study examines two feedback loops caused by net metering.
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Solar energy is on the rise in the United States. At the end of the first quarter of 2015, more than 21,300 megawatts of cumulative solar electric capacity had been installed around the country, enough to power more than 4.3 million homes. The rapid growth of solar energy in the United States is the result of forward-looking policies that are helping the nation reduce its contribution to global warming and expand its use of local renewable energy sources.
U.S. Solar Market Insight™ is a collaboration between the Solar Energy Industries Association® (SEIA®) and GTM Research that brings high-quality, solar-specific analysis and forecasts to industry professionals in the form of quarterly and annual reports. Released June 9, 2015.
The Solar Access to Public Capital (SAPC) working group has released new best practices guidelines for solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, with the goal of increasing investor confidence in the long-term viability of PV systems.
Analysts at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have used statistical analyses and detailed case studies to better understand why solar market policies in certain states are more successful. Their findings indicate that while no standard formula for solar implementation exists, a combination of foundational policies and localized strategies can increase solar photovoltaic (PV) installations in any state.
As distributed generation continues its rapid expansion, these new resources will have an increasingly larger role.
Residential solar's diffusion across the U.S. power grid is inspiring concern in the utility industry. Of particular debate have been net energy metering policies (NEM), which engender revenue losses and lead to cross-subsidization of solar customers by non-solar customers. An emerging alternative to NEM is the value of solar tariff (VOST), which is designed to pay residential solar generation based on a more nuanced benefit-cost analysis to determine the actual value of residential solar to utility operations.
Several states are currently addressing the issue of net metering program caps, which limit the total amount of net metered generating capacity that can be installed in a state or utility service territory.
Utilities have taken on the practice of applying standby and fixed cost charges specific to solar PV for customers choosing to go solar as a means to recover costs resulting from net energy metering (NEM).
The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) appreciates the opportunity to submit comments in response to the Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office (DOE SETO) Request For Information on “Net Benefits and Costs of Distributed Solar Energy and Innovative Solar Deployment Models”. SEIA is a very active participant on these issues in legislative and regulatory arenas in states across the country as well as in a variety of national forums.