New York has a considerable amount of solar potential and has consistently been in the top 10 US solar markets. Pursuant to Governor Cuomo’s stated commitment to the NY-SUN initiative, the New York Public Service Commission (PSC) recently announced a 10-year $1 billion commitment to developing a self-sustaining solar market in New York State. The program will lead to 3,000MW of PV installations across New York State by 2022. The state has other policies in place to promote solar investment, including a feed-in tariff through Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) and net metering. Through its Reforming the Energy Vision docket, the Commission reviewing the regulatory and market environment needed to encourage a more efficient electricity system, including increased amounts of distributed generation.
Facts on the New York Solar Industry
- There are currently more than 545 solar companies at work throughout the value chain in New York, employing 7,300 people.
- In 2014, New York installed 147 MW of solar electric capacity, ranking it 7th nationally.
- The 456 MW of solar energy currently installed in New York ranks the state eighth in the country in installed solar capacity. There is enough solar energy installed in the state to power 77,000 homes.
- In 2014, $451 million was invested on solar installations in New York. This represents a 33% increase over the previous year, and is expected to grow again this year.
- Installed solar photovoltaic system prices in the U.S. have dropped steadily -- by 12% from last year and 45% from 2010.
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SEIA New York State Policy Priorities
- Promote a strong fiscal environment for solar, including maintaining support for solar incentive programs over the long-term, and promoting effective implementation of the declining block incentive programs, and clarifying questions around applicability of state and county sales tax.
- Through participation in the Reforming the Energy Vision (see below) docket and other arenas as appropriate, promote solar friendly policies in any future regulatory construct.
Ensure efficient implementation of net metering policies, including addressing net metering caps.
The New York Department of Public Services' Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) Initiative aims to shape regulatory changes to promote energy efficiency and increased use of renewable energy statewide. For more information, visit the REV Initiative website.
Notable Solar Installations in New York
- Long Island Solar Farm was completed in 2011 by developer BP Solar. This photovoltaic project has the capacity to generate 32 MW of electricity -- enough to power over 5,000 New York homes.
- Several large retailers in New York have gone solar, including Walmart, Kohl's, Macy's and Target. Anheuser-Busch has installed one of the largest corporate photovoltaic systems in the state with 797 kW of solar capacity at their location in Bronx.
- At 5 MW, Eastern Long Island Solar Project is among the largest solar installations in New York. Completed in 2012 by EDF Renewables, this photovoltaic project has enough electric capacity to power more than 800 homes.
See our solar installations maps.
Solar Companies in New York
There are currently more than 545 solar companies at work throughout the value chain in New York. These companies provide a wide variety of solar products and services ranging from solar system installations to the manufacturing of components used in photovoltaic panels. These companies can be broken down across the following categories: 76 manufacturers, 25 manufacturing facilities, 191 contractor/installers, 44 project developers, 32 distributors and 202 engaged in other solar activities including financing, engineering and legal support.
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New York Solar Policy Resources
New York State Energy Research & Development Authority - Find a wide variety of information on state government energy programs, research, policy, projects, energy-saving strategies and energy-related statistics
New York State Public Service Commission - Learn about the governing body that regulates the electricity rates and services of New York public utilities
New York State Assembly - Track pending legislation affecting solar energy, locate and contact individual legislators, and stay up to date on current legislative issues in New York
DSIRE incentives database - New York - Search a public clearinghouse for specific solar energy incentives in New York and across the United States
U.S. Energy Information Administration - New York State Profile - Explore official energy statistics, including data on electricity supply and demand, from the U.S. government