The State of the Solar Industry

The Solar Energy Industries Association has released their Q2 report, and the news is sunny! (oooh, sorry ’bout that.  The pun was too tempting)

The highlights: 832 Megawatts of new solar installed in the second quarter of 2013, the second best quarter for solar, ever.

This brings the US total to 9,400 Megawatts of solar electricity, on pace to reach 10,000MW (10GW) by the end of the year.

To put that in layman’s terms, that’s enough to power 1.5 MILLION homes.  To put it another way, it’s like removing 1.9 Million cars from the road.

Powering 1.5 Million homes, or taking 1.9 Million cars off the road.  With that comparison, we can deduce that ‘going solar’ has a BIGGER environmental impact than buying an electric car, way bigger than buying a hybrid!

Click on SEIA’s infographic for more from their Q2 report:

SMI-Q2-2013-Infographic[1]

Source: SEIA.org

How Clean is the Electricity that YOU Use?

Ever wonder where the electricity you use comes from, and how it is produced?  Check out the EPA’s Power Profiler!  This nifty tool allows you to look up any location (in the US, sorry international readers!) in order to:

  • Determine your power grid region based on your ZIP code and electric utility
  • Compare the fuel mix and air emissions rates of the electricity in your region to the national average
  • Determine the air emissions impacts of electricity use in your home or business

After shocking you with the reality of your impact from electricity use, it shows you some energy efficiency tips.  Most importantly, it shows you how you can buy green power in your area through regional Renewable Energy Credit/Certificate programs!

Here’s a summary from my location:  Very high coal use, higher than average carbon emission.  We are trying to change that!

Check out the Power Profiler tool and let us know what you find out!  What did you find most shocking or interesting?