POWER magazine recently published an article discussing the rise of renewable
energy, specifically with significant investments and legislative support. There are
some companies, such as Hot Purple Energy, that are doing good for our
environment. But from our perspective, articles like this are less fact and more
fiction. Are our legislatures really teeing up renewables for growth?
While there are many commendable takeaways in the article, what caught our
attention was the emphasis on the significant investment in solar deployment, such
as the enactment of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), which extended tax credits and
incentives to perpetuate solar progress. Now don’t get us wrong, that was a big win
for the renewables industry, but what the article fails to mention is the persistence
of California legislators and beneficiaries passing anti-rooftop solar legislation.
Recent implementation of such legislation in California has resulted in a decline of 40
70% this year. Additionally, layoffs of California rooftop solar workers have already
reached alarming numbers. If this trend continues with more anti-solar legislation,
we can expect an even more substantial reduction, ultimately leading to increased
solar/energy costs for everyone.
On a positive note, POWER notes that American Clean Power (ACP) reports that
there has been a whopping 63% increase in utility-scale battery storage installations
in the U.S. from Q2 of 2022 to Q3 of 2023. Furthermore, as HPE anticipated a decade
ago, combining solar with battery storage is a winning strategy. ACP’s data reveals
that out of the 27,178 MW of hybrid projects (which involve multiple renewable
energy sources) in the pipeline by the end of Q3 in 2023, a staggering 98% of them
comprised of solar paired with storage.
It’s evident that renewable energy is gaining traction. While there’s much to
celebrate, like the IRA boosting solar, there are also roadblocks, like the anti-rooftop
legislation in California. Despite the hurdles, it’s clear: renewable energy is here to