I debated long and hard about writing this post, but I think it bears mentioning, if only to dispel some misconceptions about one of the things I wrote from my daily posts from the Solar Power Generation conference last week.
In the second of my dispatches, I wrote the following:
An interesting question came up in the same session: Why aren’t more projects being developed in the Southeast? Yes, the irradiation isn’t as high as it is in California, but it’s not as low as New Jersey. The regulations are lower, the hurdles to develop projects are lower — why isn’t anyone coming to the Southeast to bring solar projects to those states? The general consensus of the assembled experts was that the Southeast doesn’t get more business because, though all of the questioner’s points were accurate, there are few — if any — incentives for developers to go there. There’s no notable Renewable Portfolio Standards (which require state utilities to have a portion of their portfolio coming from renewable energy sources), and there are few if any subsidies or incentives (like the Renewable Energy Certificates so popular in other states). That renders projects less profitable in the Southeast than they are in other parts of the country — so developers aren’t coming.
Which elicited this reader comment from a gentleman named Andrew Tomer:
There you go, lack of ratepayer extracted subsidies holding back solar powerin the South East region of the country.Geesh, who would have thought those hayseeds would not have wanted extra charges tacked on their power bills for the privilege of buying more expensive electricity!