Study: Solar PV in the Built Environment Could Power California Nearly 5 Times Over

In 2007, when the cost of a rooftop solar system hovered around $8 per watt, engineer and solar advocate Bill Powers proposed an ambitious plan: replace a proposed transmission line for southern California with 2,000 megawatts of PV systems across San Diego.

Opponents of the Sunrise Powerlink transmission line, which was completed by the California utility SDG&E in 2012, seized on the report as proof that distributed solar could offset the need for large-scale infrastructure projects built in sensitive habitats. Powers’ report claimed that commercial rooftop solar systems could supply the same amount of energy as the transmission project, …read more

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