Solar energy is any type of energy generated by the Sun. And there is no doubt that the Sun is one of the most powerful energy sources that more and more people are taking advantage of. And this is because there are so many benefits of using solar energy. First of all, it provides clean renewable energy. Also, one of the important benefits is that it is the cheapest source of energy. And lastly, by installing solar panels you would increase the value of your home. Still, the efficiency of your solar panels will depend on the area where you are living in. Because of the weather condition, cities in some areas will generate more solar energy than others. Therefore, read this article and find out what are the 10 American cities with the most solar energy potential.
Solar power in the United States
Because of so many benefits that solar energy has its usage has been increasing rapidly across the world. China is the leader when it comes to the usage of solar energy, while the United States is ranking second. Solar energy in the United States didn’t reach its full potential yet. But the solar industry is showing positive growth throughout the nation. Nowadays, over 3% of the energy in the United States comes from solar energy. It is expected that by 2030 more than one in seven homes will install solar panels.
Solar energy in the United States has been used for centuries. In fact, the first solar-produced electricity happened in the United States in 1954. Since then all the states figured out the advantages that it brings and started using it for both commercial and residential purposes. Nowadays, solar energy in the United States can be generated in two ways:
- Solar photovoltaics (PV) – rooftop solar panels that convert sunlight directly to electricity
- Solar thermal – mirrors that concentrated sunlight at the receptor that later generates electricity
And with the solar industry growth in the United States, there has been a high demand for solar panels installations and their maintenance. For that reason, there is a rising number of companies that provide these services. In case you need assistance with this matter too, make sure to hire a reliable company such as Peak Services. That way you will be certain that you will get professional and cost-effective services.
What are the American cities with the most solar energy potential?
It is possible to use solar energy in all the states across the country. Even though it might seem that some states are not convenient to generate solar electricity, it is certain that we do get sunlight wherever we go. Still, there is a difference between the states that have sunny days throughout the whole year and the states that have more cloudy and rainy days. Some states can generate more electricity and provide more energy than others. For example, nine cities in the United States have more solar power than the whole country had a decade ago. This is proof of how fast this industry is growing and that the Sun will become the main source of electricity in the years to come.
However, having in mind that weather conditions differ across the country there are certain cities that show more potential in producing solar energy. Therefore, in order to motivate people to go solar governments of different states have decided to help out people go solar in different ways. For example, Nevada’s solar incentives are very stimulating to people and there is a prediction that by 2050 Nevada will go solar 100%. Apart from Nevada, there are some other states, specifically cities that can generate solar electricity more than others. So let’s have a look at what are American cities with the most solar energy potential.
Honolulu is one of the leaders in the nation when it comes to the usage of solar energy. Because on average it has 271 sunny days and a large surface of water that reflects the sunlight, Honolulu has become the city with the biggest solar energy potential. Having in mind that electricity bills are three times higher in Honolulu than the national average, it is important for Honolulu to use its full potential and take advantage of solar energy.
Today, a survey shows that three solar panels are installed for every person that lives here. And almost 54% of installed rooftop panels are used for commercial purposes. In order to maintain this number and to progress even more businesses are aware of the importance of investment in commercial solar panel cleaning services and their maintenance.
Not only are businesses investing in solar energy, but the government as well. In order to stimulate people to go solar both the federal and state government are helping people with credit for installments. Today, the installation of solar panels in Honolulu is 80% cheaper than a decade ago. Also, the state created a program where people can claim up to 35% of up to $5,000 in saving when they file for annual taxes. Also, the federal government gives a 26% tax credit until the end of 2022 and 22% in 2023. There is no doubt that the government of Hawaii has seen the solar potential the island has and that they are doing a great job in motivating people to install solar panels. It is certainly possible for Honolulu to reach its goal and go 100% solar by 2045.
Las Vegas, NV
Las Vegas is the second city with the largest solar energy potential. While Honolulu produces 1,100 watts of solar energy per person, Las Vegas produces 700 watts. It is true that the gap is still huge, but Las Vegas and the state of Nevada are doing their best in motivating people to install solar panels. For that reason, there are more and more companies that provide solar panel cleaning North Las Vegas services making sure the existing solar panels generate electricity properly.
Because of so many sunny days and the sun-bathed desert that reflects sunlight it is undoubtedly why Las Vegas has so much solar potential. And the government is well aware of it. For that reason, there are so many different programs that motivate people to install rooftop panels and go solar. Some of the programs are:
- Net Metering Program
- Energy Storage Incentive
- Federal Tax Solar Credit
- Local Solar Rebates
- Renewable Energy System Property Tax Exemption (for commercial use only)
Las Vegas has so much solar potential and it is important to take advantage of it. You will never have to think about high electricity bills again. And even better the maintenance of rooftop panels is very easy. All that you would have to do is hire solar panel bird control North Las Vegas services to remove bird droppings and your solar panels will work impeccably.
San Diego, CA
Another city that has a lot of solar potentials is located in California. It is no surprise to see that taking into consideration the number of sunny days that California has. The number three city with the most solar energy potential is San Diego. The good news is that people recognized the benefits of going solar and today San Diego is ranked second in the nation when it comes to solar-installed panels. Recent studies have shown that four out of ten homes have installed solar units. San Diego produces 303 megawatts which is enough to provide solar power to 76,000 homes. And just a year ago the city was producing 189 megawatts of solar energy. This is proof of how fast the solar industry is developing here.
It is true that solar panels are a cost-effective solution but for some families, it can be a big investment to pay for their installation. For that reason, the government of San Diego created a program that would help the low-income community. With San Diego Solar Equity Program low-income families will have a chance to install solar panels at minimum cost or in some cases at no cost. The program aims to cover the full amount of the installation of solar systems up to 6.5 kilowatts. With this program, there is no doubt that Diego will reach its goal easily and use 100% solar power by 2035.
With 293 sunny days a year, Albuquerque is another city that has great solar potential. In order to cover their electrical need on average one home needs 5 kilowatts of solar energy. As per the report released in December 2022, the price per one watt in Albuquerque is $3,50. This means that the price for solar installations of solar panels size 5 kilowatts on average would cost $17,500. Still, because Albuquerque offers so many solar incentives the price can be much lower. Incentives that the government of Albuquerque offers in order to help people with solar panel installation and to motivate people to go solar include 13 programs:
- Performance-Based Solar Program (PNM)
- Sustainable Building Tax Credit (Personal)
- Solar Energy Gross Receipts Gross Deduction
- Renewable Portfolio Standard
- Solar/Wind Construction Permitting Standard
- Sustainable Building Tax Credit (Corporate)
- Clean Energy Revenue Bond Program
- Drinking Water State Revolving Loan Fund
- Renewable Energy Financing District
- Gross Receipts Tax Exemption for Sales of Wind and Solar Systems to Government Entities
- New Mexico Easements & Rights Laws
- System Benefits Charge
- Alternative Energy Product Manufacturers Tax Credit
With so many solar incentives, tax credits, and rebates it seems that now is the best time to install solar panels. It might seem like a big investment now. But over the few years, you will get the investment back, have lower electricity bills, and help Albuquerque reach its full solar potential and go solar 100% by 2030.
San Jose, CA
As already mentioned in the last couple of years California became the leader in the production of solar energy. Therefore, it is no surprise to see another Californian city on the list of American cities with the most solar energy potential. For years, San Jose has been taking place as one of the nation’s superstars when it comes to the usage of solar energy. More and more people are deciding to install solar panels and help San Jose reach the goal of using 100% renewable energy by 2030.
And apart from all the benefits that using solar power has homeowners came to the realization that solar panels add value to homes. And with the increasing number of solar panel installations, the city introduced different financial programs to help people with the installation charges.
Current solar incentives in San Jose include net metering in San Jose and federal tax credit. Still, the most significant program is the federal tax credit where you can save up to 30% of solar installation costs. By the end of 2032, it will fall to 26% so there is no doubt that now is the best time to go solar in San Jose.
San Antonio, TX
With 284 sunny days per year, San Antonio is a city that has the most potential when it comes to the production of solar energy. And the city is well aware of its potential. At the moment San Antonio is the largest solar energy producer in Texas. It generates 355 megawatts of solar power which is enough to power 60 000 homes. The goal of San Antonio is to make the city carbon neutral by 2050. However, to achieve that the city needs the help of its residents. Therefore, there are different financial programs that the government offers in order to help people with the installation of solar panels.
If you were wondering what the cost of solar panels is and whether they are worth it the answer is quite simple. Yes, they are. Because of its solar potential and solar incentives that the city offers to its citizens now is the good time to go solar in San Antonio. The average cost of solar panel installation is around $10,000. It might seem a lot but with the federal tax credit and lower electricity bills that you will pay, rest assured that you would pay back this investment in five years. And after that, you will never have to worry again about your bills and how much electricity you use.
For many people, it might be a surprise that Burlington is on the list of American cities with the most solar energy potential. The city doesn’t have as many sunny days as other cities on the list. But it is still one of the leaders when it comes to solar energy predation and usage. In 2014, Burlington became the first city in the United States to be powered by renewable energy 100%. At the moment the city gets its energy from four different sources:
So because of so few sunny days in Burlington you are probably wondering whether it is worth installing solar panels and how long will the solar panels last. There are different factors that will influence their lifespan but one is certain. Now is the right time to go solar in Burlington. Because of the local and state solar incentives, you will end up saving a lot of money in the long run. According to some calculations, an average homeowner can save up to around $26,000 over the lifetime of solar panels.
New Orleans, LA
With an average of 219 sunny days, New Orleans is another city that has a lot of solar potentials. There are different types of solar panels that can be installed here, but there is no doubt that they are all worth the investment. Regardless of the type of solar panels over 20 years, you would be able to save up to $22,000 by installing just an average size solar system.
On average New Orleans generates around 5.38 kilowatts per square meter in one day. But because of weather conditions, New Orleans has three months in a year when it generates less solar power. In December, January, and February New Orleans generates around 4.57 kilowatts per square meter. Still, this is much higher than in some other cities in the United States. And for that reason, New Orleans became a city that has a lot of solar potentials. And with the Ad Valorem tax exemption program it is certain that New Orleans will be able to go 100% solar sooner than expected.
Phoenix is another city in the United States that plays an important role in solar energy production and has a lot of potentials. And this is very important considering that Arizona is the state that has monthly energy bills above the national average. Residents that have installed solar panels reported that they can save up to $1,640 per year on electrical bills. Therefore if you are located in Phoenix you should consider installing solar panels as this will save you money in the long run. Also, with the number of sunny days that it has you will never have to be stressed about how much electricity your solar panels will generate.
Still, there is one thing that you should pay attention to when having solar panels in Phoenix. Just like Nevada, Arizona is famous for its number of pigeons. And their dropping can affect the efficiency of solar panels. For that reason, pigeon control under solar panels should be your priority wherever you live. No wonder why Phoenix became home to many companies that provide this kind of service. Therefore, with the number of solar panels installed on city buildings and facilities and many solar panel maintenance companies, there is no doubt that very soon Phoenix will be a carbon-neutral city.
The last on our list of 10 American cities with the most solar energy potential is Washington, DC. As the capital of the United States Washington is doing its best to give a positive example to the nation and use renewable energy. The good news is that it has a lot of potentials. And that it is possible to achieve its goal of going 100% solar. There is no doubt that with the solar incentives and new solar technologies it has never been a better time to invest in solar panels in Washington. The cost of a solar panel system of 5 kilowatts is $25,000. But after getting the tax breaks and rebates it would cost you around $12,500.
It is certain that this is an acceptable fee because of the money that you will save in the next years on your electrical bills. All that you would have to do is invest in annual residential solar panel cleaning services which are very affordable. And once you install solar panels you would never have to get stressed about electricity again. Washington DC has great solar potential and it is certain that it will continue to generate enough solar energy in the years to come.
What other cities have great solar energy potential?
There is no doubt that the United States has a lot of potential when it comes to the production of solar energy. We mentioned just 10 American cities with the most solar energy potential, but there are certainly more. Three more cities are located in sunny California and have a lot of solar capacity. Those are Riverside, Los Angeles, and Sacramento. Also, Denver, CO, and Indianapolis, IN are other cities that are named as ‘solar start’ producing over 50 watts per person. With so many cities that have such a great solar capacity, it is certain that we can expect the United States will start producing 100% solar energy in the near future.