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California Solar Energy By the Numbers in 2021

By December 13, 2021December 14th, 2021Blog
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California has an ambitious goal of being 50% powered by renewable energy by 2025. As we approach 2022, California is nearly at 95 percent renewable energy, which means that the golden state produces 95 percent of public grid electricity via renewable energy sources, such as solar panels.

California Hits 15.43 Percent of Energy Production from Solar

California produced 29,450 gigawatt-hours of energy from solar, representing 15.43 percent of the total in-state energy production from the California ISO. That is up 1.44 percent since 2018, and the contribution by solar is expected to grow as more solar power plants and solar microgrids get the green light.

Nationally, California produces 30 percent of the Solar Energy produced in the US. Over the last ten years, solar has grown nationally by 42 percent.

What’s Driving Solar Energy in California?

There is no question that solar energy production is rising in California and nationally. The driving factors in California include:

  • Governmental Incentives – thanks to government programs such as the Solar Investment Tax Credit. Another factor that has led to the growth of solar nationally is the improvement of technology which drops the cost of solar components.
  • Continued Focus on Environmental Health – Add to those benefits the public desire for clean energy and their focus on positive environmental health, and you create a marketplace where solar energy is easy, affordable and the new way of life.
  • Natural Disasters – Wildfires are one of the chief reasons people and businesses go solar. With the uncertainty of energy supply due to Public Safety Power Shut-offs initiated by PG&E and other power suppliers when a weather-related event could lead to wildfire, there is more emphasis on commercial and industrial solar in California.
  • Greater Energy Independence – More homeowners and businesses want to have greater control over their energy production and usage, which increases the commercial solar energy solutions in California.

As a commercial solar company in California, we see that any one of these reasons makes going solar a good bet but combined; they form most of the driving force behind the continued growth of solar energy in California. From agricultural solar energy systems to college and education energy systems, solar panel installations allow businesses to run smoother.

By 2021, 230,000 homes in California had solar arrays. Combine that with an incredible 771 solar power plants, and you begin to see why California is leading the nation in solar production.

Solar power is reassuring for California communities. In 2019, 25,281 blackout events, representing a 23 percent jump from 2018, occurred in California and affected 28.4 million customers.

To paint this picture accurately, when a blackout occurs, entire communities go dark. Businesses cannot function, stores cannot process credit cards, power freezers, and coolers, or provide lights by which customers can shop. Gas stations cannot pump gas, and people cannot work. In short, most of the community is in the dark.

Solar Energy for Businesses

Solar energy installations for businesses keep the doors open and allow the greater community to buy food, fuel their vehicles, and go to work. That continuation of normalcy during blackouts keeps communities active and safe. That is why commercial industries, such as education, construction, retail, and others, are moving toward solar energy.

Individuals and businesses’ increased control over energy production means a more significant amount of energy independence and a decrease in energy reliance on the community power grid.

As California moves towards 100% renewable energy, the focus on individual energy supply increases. However, regardless of whether energy production is from fossil fuel or renewable energy sources, when the power company creates a blackout event to protect communities from wildfires started by damaged transfer lines and equipment, the lights go out entirely.

The problems include the rising costs of electricity and the uncertainty of electricity supply. Those are both barriers that decrease with private solar array installation.

To learn more about how solar may positively impact your business, give us a call. As a solar energy company in California, we are happy to answer any of your solar questions.