Solar energy is developing very quickly, so it isn’t surprising that a lot has happened since Harness the Sun was published in September 2015. To stay abreast of these developments, here are a few resources that you may want to check out online:
Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and GTM Research co-publish U.S. Solar Market Insight reports. These reports are issued quarterly and annually. In addition to providing information on overall industry trends, they show the relative shares of residential, non-residential (commercial, institutional, non-profit), and utlility-scale photovoltaic (PV) installations, the pricing of PV installations in each of these sectors, and state-by-state PV installation rankings. Updates on concentrating solar power (CSP) projects are also included. Executive summaries of these reports are available free online, and full reports can be ordered.
The Smart Electric Power Alliance (SEPA) is a multi-stakeholder group that focuses substantially on the solar industry’s interface with US electric utilities. Here’s a listing of its recent reports.
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBL) publishes an impressive stream of well-documented reports looking at current trends and future challenges related to solar energy and renewables more broadly. Every year, LBL, in tandem with the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot program, releases an analysis of solar project cost, performance, and pricing trends. Here’s a link to its Utility-Scale Solar 2015. A more complete listing of Berkeley Labs’ recent studies on renewable energy, together with free links to full reports, is available on its website.
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is an abiding source of valuable information and analysis on the solar industry. Some of its reportage appears in this listing of recent popular publications. You may also want to check out the Solar Research tab on its website.
Lazard produces periodically updated analyses of the levelized cost of energy (LCOE), comparing the life-cycle costs of different electricity-generating technologies. Its report, Lazard Cost of Energy Analysis 11.0, was published in November 2017. Be sure to look at its most recent report when checking these important indicators of solar’s competitive status in the U.S. power market.
For reportage on employment in the U.S. solar industry, the Solar Foundation‘s annual Solar Jobs Census is a great resource.
Environment America frequently publishes reports on solar energy’s current status and future potential. Its Shining Cities report periodically ranks the solar performance of local governments. The solar investments of major retailers are documented, most recently in Solar on Superstores. Looking more broadly, We Have the Power, published in March 2016, offers a roadmap to a 100% renewable energy future in America.
Another vision of what states can do to achieve 100% reliance on renewable energy has been generated by The Solutions Project, led by Stanford University’s Marc Jacobsen. Check out its interactive roadmap
For regulatory changes affecting the solar industry as well as workforce-related issues, the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) is a useful resource on regulatory changes affecting solar as well as workforce-related issues in the industry.
For an interactive matrix showing monthly developments in the leading US solar state, California, see Go Solar California‘s California Solar Statistics.