The state of Oregon recently launched a solar incentive one-time utility plan that is is more realistic than ambitious. Being the 4th best in the country with respect to solar policies, this will prove to be a real test for Oregon. The new 10-year plan aims at meeting 10% of the electricity needs of the state by the year 2027, and all this through solar power generated in Oregon.
Considering that in 2016, solar power only counted for a third of 1% of the electricity being generated in Oregon, critics and experts have dubbed this an overly ambitious plan, though optimists are looking forward to the accomplishments, however big or small.
The challenge necessary to achieve this feat would mean an incredible growth in the solar capacity of the state from barely 260 megawatts reported at the end of 2016 to at least 4000 megawatts by 2027.
However, the Oregon Solar Energy Industries Association has faith in this plan, and they have a strong belief that it is achievable. The biggest benefit they have working in their favor is the utility-scale solar boom that is already evident in Oregon. Generally, prices are falling in the state, and this is buoyed by favorable solar policies that have been passed recently.
Oregon is currently experiencing an energy transition which is pivotal in the future of the state. According to the president of the board at Oregon Solar Energy Industries Association, Laurie Hutchinson, “it is an ambitious project, but a reasonable way of achieving the future”.
The Green Energy Institute at Lewis & Clark Law School, the team that produced the 10-year plan, emphasizes on a 6-point solar policy guideline at federal and state levels, which will work well for the growth of the industry as it is, and spur further growth in the future. One of the policies is pegged on the Residential Energy Tax credit, a policy that expires soon, and its renewal is the top priority for Oregon Solar Energy Industries Association.