The cost of solar photo voltaic (PV) panels has dropped by 90 percent over the past decade, driving solar ahead as an affordable power source. In several U.S. markets, solar is at grid parity with fossil fuel based power.
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association between Q1 and Q3 2016, solar accounted for 39 percent of all new electric generating capacity brought on-line in the U.S, ranking second only to natural gas as the largest source of new capacity additions. The U.S. installed 4,143 MW of solar PV in Q3 2016, increasing 99 percent over Q2 2016 and 191 percent over Q3 2015 – led by 14 states that installed more than 100 MW between Q1 and Q3 2016. This marks the largest quarter ever for the U.S. solar industry.
By 2021, 30 states in the U.S. will be 100+MW annual solar markets, with 20 of those states home to more than 1 GW of operating solar PV. Distributed commercial PV solar is being led by corporates with large industrial loads or strong, near-term renewable energy procurement targets.
Data according to the Solar Energy Industries Association. Information is current as of January 2017 and subject to change.
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