The twelve states that have opened their doors to retail competition, plus states like California and Oregon which have energy choice for some customers, receive high marks for rooftop, community, and large-scale solar.
While most Americans would likely expect solar to be installed mainly in sunnier southern states, rankings published by the Solar Energy Industries Association show that four of the twelve states that have adopted full energy choice place in the top ten states for installed megawatts of solar energy, despite most being located in northern climates. These states include Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York.
Texas, an early adopter of energy choice, is also a top producer of both solar and wind energy. California, a state that is seeing an explosion of energy choice through its community aggregation programs, places number one on the list.
When solar-friendly policies are ranked — regardless of region — energy choice states dominate the rankings.
Another widely-cited ranking by the solar advocacy group SPR has awarded Massachusetts its top spot for the second year in a row; and Energy Choice states took seven of the top 10 spots. Washington D.C., an energy choice district, also placed in the top 10.
Even though Nevada is one of the sunniest states in the U.S., it places in the bottom half of the rankings for solar friendly policies.
“Energy choice states like Massachusetts regularly receive high ratings from solar power advocates, despite having fewer sunny days than Nevada,” Question 3 energy attorney Joshua Weber said. “These states create an environment ripe for competition among solar companies, and provide platforms for innovative, new approaches to rooftop solar, community solar, and other renewable resources.”
Solar competition is only possible because Massachusetts and other energy choice states have made electric service a competitive business.
“Ultimately, many factors and state policies contribute to the success of rooftop and community solar development, but states with energy choice and open retail markets provide unmatched opportunity for innovative, green choices on your roof and in your community,” Weber said.