In an effort to save resources and save the environment, California has emerged the recent state in the country to hit a new renewable energy generation record. This is in tandem with a bill signed into law in 2015 by the Governor of California Jerry Brown requiring that 33 percent of all state regulated amenities be powered from solar and renewable energy by the year 2020. A set target expected to up by 50 percent by 2050.
New Record Hit
According to a report
by the California Independent System Operator, which runs most of California’s power grid, a massive 8,030 megawatts of power were generated on July 12 at 1306 hours, marking a whooping 2,000 megawatts higher than the amount of solar energy generated in May 2015. According to SF Gate
, the energy generated during the July 12th
heat wave was sufficient to muscle 6 million households in the Golden state.
In a statement by the ISO President , Steve Berberich
, “The recent solar production record was a clear revelation that the state of California was devoted in leading the country in adding low carbon resources to the grid while achieving its goal or attaining 33 percent renewable energy by the year 2020”.
ISO also noted that, on July 12 at 1754 hours, approximately 29 percent of electricity demands had been met by the state’s huge renewable energy collection that includes solar, hydro, wind, bio-fuel, geothermal and energy storage. Important to note is that the energy demand was met solely by large solar plants and did not include the more than 537,637 smaller roof top solar panels installed on private homes and businesses across the state.
This new record was proof that renewables
have enormous potential in the state and in the nation at large.
However, when it comes to solar energy, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA
) has constantly positioned California as the country’s solar-spoiled state. In fact, in a report published by SEIA
in April 2016, California had more solar jobs than any other state and had more megawatts of solar capacity installed.
In support to SEIA
, the US-Department of Energy (DOE)
has also pointed out that California has a huge capacity for both solar power generations than the rest of the nation combined.
The Slight Drawback
With the demand for solar energy growing astronomically, the shift has not always been easy. This is because the sun does not shine 24 hours a day. In addition, the wind is not always blowing. Therefore, when solar energy is in great supply (midday) there is little demand of electricity. Conversely, wind power picks up night but usually when it is too late. This creates a drift particularly because the largest demand for power supply is around 7pm when families are returning home. Also, during the sunny days, the state’s energy sources generate enough energy than it requires, which results in the grid operator asking the solar farms to shut down.
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