Green Energy Times would like to thank Solar Source of Keene, NH for their contribution of this information about Solar Photovoltaics to help bring energy awareness, understanding and independence to you all!
Last year PV installations in the USA grew by 69%, 40 times faster than the rest of the economy according to the Solar Energy Industry Association (SEIA)! The US solar industry accounted for $6BN in 2010 a 67% increase over 2009’s $3.6BN. PV capacity has grown from 1,459 MW in 2000 to 40,758 MW in 2010 a 40 % annual growth rate. That’s just the US; sadly we’re behind a number of smaller countries including Germany, Japan and Spain. In 2010 the utility segment of the domestic PV industry saw the fastest expansion, as many large scale systems primarily in southwestern deserts ramped up. Last year, Warren Buffett’s MidAmerican Energy Holdings agreed to buy a 49 percent stake in the $1.8 billion Agua Caliente 290-megawatt power plant being built in Arizona. This was their second foray into utility-scale PV power plants providing good returns with little downside risk. The residential PV segment also saw growth and is becoming more main stream. KB Home, one of the nation’s large home builders announced that it will include solar power systems as a standard feature in select communities in Central Florida. The systems can help homeowners reduce their monthly energy bills, for example, a one-story, three bedroom home with the standard solar power system included, is estimated to save a homeowner over $1,200 annually on energy costs when compared to a typical resale home. Pricing for these homes will start in the low $200,000’s. The introduction of solar power systems as a standard feature of homes at select KB Home communities in Central Florida expands on the builder’s successful solar power initiative that includes nearly 30 KB Home communities throughout Southern California.
click here for more information ( PDF download ): PV industry hits its stride