The United States is entering a new era where the dangers of climate change are more apparent with every record-breaking wildfire, flood and hurricane that comes to pass. At the same time, a new presidential administration has committed to taking steps to combat the issue and work toward a goal of zero carbon emissions by 2050.
A number of states have already set their own decarbonization goals. According to the National Council of State Legislatures, 30 states, Washington, D.C., and three territories have adopted an RPS, while seven states and one territory have set renewable energy goals.
While most states and territories set ultimate goals to reach net-zero energy for either their power sectors or entire economies by 2050, some states had earlier milestones to reach. If utilities do not reach their RPS requirements, NREL’s best practices say they should have to pay a penalty. However, CESA says some states include “escape hatches” for utilities, which allow reassessment of goals as RPS numbers approach higher levels.
Solar Power World checked in to see how progress was going for the states with early goals. Use the map below to explore.