Welcome To Ohio — The Solar State
Ohio’s solar market is flourishing because of flat and inexpensive land and high demand for solar from companies that are pursuing their clean energy commitments.
Despite years of distrust towards renewable energy on the part of state lawmakers, by the end of next year, Ohio is going to increase its utility-scale solar capacity four times — from 100 to 400 megawatts.
According to Inside Climate News, demand is overwhelming. Dan Sawmiller, a member of the state’s Natural Resources Defence Council says that buyers are going into contracts before the projects are even permitted because the demand is outrunning supply.
“The most recent example is from Amazon, which last week said it will buy electricity from a planned 300-megawatt solar array in Union County, on the northwestern fringe of the Columbus metro area, even though the project remains early in the approval process with the Ohio Power Siting Board. The developer, Acciona of Spain, is one of many companies now doing their first projects in the state.”
Ohio now ranks 28th in the country in installed solar capacity but ranks 14th in projected new capacity in the next five years.
In the meantime, solar power is getting less expensive, now competing in costs with coal. As a result, companies are increasingly making commitments to get 100% of their energy from renewable sources.
Let’s hope that the other states follow the suit and pursue renewables more aggressively.
Nikola uses his background in electrical engineering to break down complex sustainability topics for GreenCitizen’s readers. He is a firm believer in environmental conservation, which he practices daily through recycling and home-grown food. He enjoys hiking, engaging in white-water sports, and collecting pocket knives.