Report: R.I. misses the cut on solar energy

Rhode Island failed to rank among top solar energy states in a report released Thursday by Environment Rhode Island. More

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Energy

Report: R.I. misses the cut on solar energy

BLOOMBERG FILE PHOTO/GEORGE FREY
A NEW REPORT on top solar energy states found government leadership is key in encouraging solar power use.
Posted 7/25/13

PROVIDENCE -- Rhode Island failed to rank among top solar-energy states in a report released Thursday by Environment Rhode Island.

The report, called “Lighting the Way: What We Can Learn from America’s Top 12 Solar States,” credited state and local governments for expanding solar power use in their states. The 12 states profiled all had legislative policies that encouraged solar use.

The report focused on Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, and Vermont. It noted that while these states account for 28 percent of the United States population, they make up 84 percent of installed solar energy in the country.

Channing Jones, program associate with Environment Rhode Island, credited the governments in those states. “The progress of other states should give us the confidence that we can do much more,” he said in a statement. “Our message today is clear: If you want your state to be a leader in pollution-free solar energy, set big goals and get good policies on the books.”

Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee last week signed a law to enable property-assessed clean energy financing, aimed at encouraging clean energy alternatives like solar power. But a bill that would expand the state’s distributed generation program, which makes it easier for solar users to connect to the energy grid, failed to come to a vote.

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