Oregon Solar News

What is Oregon's Solar Potential


OSEIA members and supporters all know that Oregon is a great place for solar. But what is solar's potential in the state? That's a key question as we look at policy questions and deal with issues like net metering, incentives for installing solar on rooftops and developing utility-scale projects.

An exciting project that OSEIA has undertaken is to create an "Oregon Solar Business Plan" to outline the potential that solar energy has over the next ten years in Oregon. Initial findings will be revealed at the Northwest Clean & Affordable Energy Conference on Thursday, Nov. 17 @ 10:50am.

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Environment America's Solar Report is Out

From Environment America- 'Solar energy is on the rise in the United States. Through September 2016, more than 31 gigawatts of solar electric capacity had been installed around the country, enough to power more than 6 million homes. The rapid growth of solar energy in the United States is the result of forward-looking policies that are helping the nation reduce its contribution to global warming and expand its use of local renewable energy sources.

One policy in particular, net energy metering, has been instrumental in the growth of solar energy, particularly on homes and small businesses. Net energy metering enables solar panel owners to earn fair compensation for the benefits they provide to other users of the electricity grid, and makes “going solar” an affordable option for more people.

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PUC Solar Report Heads to the Legislature


The Oregon Public Utility Commission has released its 3rd and final draft of their much anticipated solar incentives report. It heads to the legislature on October 28th.

The 1st draft of the report was met with a lot of criticism from many stakeholders, especially the solar industry. The final report is no longer viewed as dangerous but we still have much work to do.

The 2017 legislative session begins on February 1, 2017 and OSEIA will be prepared, with our Oregon Solar Business Plan in hand, to provide additional support for the continuation of existing solar programs and the development of new ones.

Solar Industry Represents at PUC Special Public Meeting


As you all know, we've been spending a lot of time lately pushing back on the first draft of the solar report the PUC is preparing for the legislature. The second draft came out earlier this month and while it's still not great, there was some movement. Today was an opportunity to present information directly to the commissioners as part of the feedback process....

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Oregon's energy department joins critics ripping PUC report that would shrink solar incentives


The Oregon Department of Energy has joined renewable energy advocates in slamming a draft Public Utility Commission report that recommends significant changes to two major solar incentives – but the report did find a pair of supporters: Portland General Electric and PacifiCorp.

In its draft report to the legislature, the commission characterized the Oregon solar industry as “robust” and nearly ready to thrive with reduced support from utility ratepayers.

The Department of Energy, in comments filed Wednesday with the PUC, painted a different picture.

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OSEIA Comments on First Draft Solar Report, UM 1758


10 August 2016

Via Electronic Filing

Public Utilities Commission of Oregon Attn: Filing Center

PUC.FilingCenter@state.or.us

Re: In the Matter of PUBLIC UTILITY COMMISSION OF OREGON,
Report to the Legislature on Incentives for Development and use of Solar Photovoltaic Energy Systems. Open via House Bill 2941.
Docket No. UM 1758

Dear Filing Center:

Enclosed for filing in the above-referenced docket is the Oregon Solar Energy Industries (OSEIA)’s Written Comments in Response to the First Draft Solar Report. Please contact me if you have any questions.

Thank you for your assistance in this matter.

Sincerely,

Jeff Bissonnette

Full comment report here.

Solar Industry Remains Critical of PUC Draft Solar Report


Oregon’s solar trade association filed comments today leveling serious criticisms in the state Public Utility Commission (PUC) proceeding that is developing a report on solar incentives for the legislature.

The Oregon Solar Energy Industries Association (OSEIA) said that it “regrets that the process has been significantly below the Commission’s usual standard of excellent public process and the draft product reflects that poor process.”

“Frankly, I was shocked at both the quality and the content of the draft report,” exclaimed Jeff Bissonnette, OSEIA’s executive director. “This is not what we’re accustomed to seeing from the PUC. Instead of thoughtful analysis that moves the conversation forward, we got a draft report full of unsubstantiated assumptions and wild guesses at the future of solar in Oregon.”

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OSEIA Slams PUC’s Draft Solar Report


In 2015, the Oregon legislature passed a bill instructing the Oregon Public Utility Commission (PUC) to produce a report that evaluated various solar incentives. The PUC opened a docket (UM 1758) as the process to produce that report. A draft report came out late last week and, sadly, the draft reflects the process that produced it: poorly thought out with questionable conclusions. Because of this, the solar industry is pushing back hard.

OSEIA released a statement about the process leading to the draft report, comparing it to “a student who procrastinated on a school assignment.” That statement can be found here. If you want to read the draft report itself, you can find it here.

OSEIA staff has reviewed the draft several times and will submit comments by next week in accordance with the docket schedule. Those comments will make several key points:

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OSEIA Criticizes Utility Regulators for Flawed Process

For Immediate Release -- Oregon’s statewide solar trade association sharply criticized the process that led to today’s release of a draft report, comparing a state utility regulatory agency to “a student who procrastinated on a school assignment.”

The Oregon Solar Energy Industries Association’s (OSEIA) comments came on the heels of a draft report released today by the Oregon Public Utility Commission that suggested “potentially radical” changes in Oregon’s solar energy policy. The commission is developing the report in response to House Bill 2941 passed in the 2015 session of the Oregon legislature. The legislation directed the commission to evaluate a range of solar programs and submit its report by September 15, 2016.

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The Solar Foundation’s National Solar Jobs Census 2015 Finds that U.S. Solar Workforce Grew by More Than 20% for the Third Consecutive Year


The Solar Foundation (TSF), an independent nonprofit solar research and education organization, today released its sixth annual National Solar Jobs Census. The new Census 2015 found that the U.S. solar industry employed 208,859 Americans in 2015, a figure that includes the addition of 35,052 solar workers over the previous year, representing 20.2 percent growth in solar industry employment in the 12 months preceding November 2015. Solar employment grew nearly 12 times faster than the national employment growth rate of 1.7 percent during the same period.

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U.S. Solar Market Sets New Record, Installing 7.3 GW of Solar PV in 2015


In yet another record-breaking year, the solar industry in the United States installed 7,286 megawatts (MW) of solar photovoltaics (PV) in 2015. GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) announced the historic figures today ahead of the March 9 release of the U.S. Solar Market Insight report.

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Energy Trust: Solar 2015 year in review, 2016 preview


Congratulations to the Oregon solar industry for closing out another record-breaking year. With the recent five-year extension of the Investment Tax Credit, we expect more record breaking years in the future.

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The U.S Community Solar Market Outlook report is now available

GTM Research's latest report, U.S. Community Solar Market Outlook 2015-2020, predicts that by 2020 community solar will be an annual half-gigawatt market in the United States.

According to the report, community solar is the next largest growth opportunity in the United States. The new report profiles the states and developers that will help drive the market from tipping point to mainstream.

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