Nevada is increasingly realizing its potential as a hub for solar, making the most of the vast amounts of sunshine the State receives. Nevada has recently overtaken California as the US leader of solar and geothermal production per capita.
The leap in solar power has been helped by major projects from several of the large casinos including MGM Resorts whose 8.3 MW solar array is the largest rooftop solar array in the United States. There have also been the addition of major businesses such as Google and Tesla to Nevada who have brought with them a desire to move towards more clean energy use, and in Tesla’s case clean energy is key to their business including developing solar panels.
Solar now accounts for 21% of Nevada’s electrical production, nearly a third of which is exported to neighbouring States making it a valuable commodity for the local economy. So much so that solar is now estimated to support over 4,000 jobs in Nevada.
Speaking at the ninth annual National Clean Energy Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval said that the “$734 million in incentives has attracted a return of $7 billion in capital investments, payroll, and taxes paid.”
The solar market in Nevada seems likely to continue its growth in the forthcoming year with key policy decisions around net metering being made in the 2017 legislative session that will boost the residential solar market.