How Much Do Local Regulations Matter? Exploring the Impact of Permitting and Local Regulatory Processes on PV Prices in the United States
While PV modules and other hardware costs have dropped significantly over recent years, non-hardware soft costs have also fallen, but not nearly as sharply. This research report, authored by experts from Yale University, Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory, University of Texas at Austin and the US Department of Energy, focuses on the impacts of city-level permitting and other regulatory processes on residential PV prices in the US. Key Findings:
Lawrence Berkley National Lab's "Tracking the Sun" is an annual report that tracks and analyzes installed prices of solar PV. The report analyzes more than 300,000 individual residential, commercial and utility scale PV systems in 33 states. Key findings include:
With a projected growth rate of 300% in the US over the next four years, distributed solar presents a number of challenges to the current distribution grid. This report from GTM Research details the new power electronics equipment used to address these challenges and provides descriptions of key markets, financing activity in the sector and state level market forecasting.
A new study from the Rocky Mountain Institute and the Georgia Tech Research Institute finds that U.S PV installation labor costs can be decreased from $0.49/watt to $0.29/watt by utilizing installation best practices. Researchers studied installation practices at 26 sites in the U.S. and Germany to determine current practices and future opportunities.
The solar industry in the United States is at a turning point; the cost of PV hardware has declined substantially in recent years, placing new attention on reducing the balance of system (BOS) costs of solar that now contribute to a growing percentage of installation expenses. How states address these costs through the creation of a favorable policy and regulatory environment is proving to be a critical determinant of a thriving statewide solar market. This report addresses the permitting and tax issues that may stimulate the solar market growth in Michigan.