Solar Energy

Ben Bradford / WFAE

North Carolina produces more solar energy than any state except California, but a new report ranks Charlotte near the bottom of major cities for solar installations.

Thomas Kohler / Flickr

The biggest companies in tech want top North Carolina lawmakers to back away from changing the state’s renewable energy laws. They join the solar energy industry and environmental advocates in their opposition to legislation that’s nearly reached the governor’s desk.

Elliot Brown / Flickr

Duke Energy and a group of environmental and solar industry groups have announced several programs to expand solar power in South Carolina, a state where little currently exists.

Solar Energy In North Carolina

May 13, 2015
Strata Solar

  Solar energy has gone from a pipe dream to a boom industry in North Carolina.  This state put more solar online last year than every state other than California.  That growth came despite major restrictions that the legislature is looking into removing.  If they did, it would change the way solar companies make their money.  Right now, owners of rooftop solar can only sell power to the major utilities.  This bill would change that and we’ll explore both sides.

REC Solar

Duke Energy has expanded its investment in solar energy, and will enter a new facet of the industry: solar panels on the roofs of businesses.

Strata Solar

North Carolina energy regulators quietly released one of their most significant, long-awaited decisions of 2014, just as the year was ending. The state Utilities Commission had spent nearly the entire year re-evaluating the rules for solar energy. On Wednesday, the commission decided to leave substantially intact the rules which have underlied a solar energy boom in North Carolina.

Elliot Brown / Flickr

Electric utilities and solar energy developers across the U.S. have clashed over how much the utilities should have to pay for the energy supplied to them by homeowners with solar panels. In South Carolina, the sides reached an agreement Friday and both are claiming a win.

Strata Solar

The nation’s largest power company will also be one of the largest solar providers. Duke Energy wrapped up six months of shopping for solar projects today, and announced it will increase its North Carolina capacity by more than a third. Despite the increase, solar remains a tiny fraction of overall generation.

Duke Energy/Flickr

Every year, Duke Energy submits a plan to state regulators, showing how it will continue to supply power to the Carolinas over the next 15 years. It projects how the energy mix will change, what new power plants the company intends to build—how much will come from solar, wind, or coal. The most recent plan is out, and WFAE’s Ben Bradford joined All Things Considered Host Mark Rumsey for a quick survey of how Duke sees the energy landscape in 2029.

Solar Power In North Carolina

Aug 27, 2014
redplanet89 / Flickr/

Thursday, August 28, 2014

North Carolina is a good state for sunshine, making it a good state for solar power generation. In fact, solar energy production has grown exponentially here because of generous tax credits, favorable state standards and rapidly decreasing technology costs. All that has made a virtually non-existent industry into one that is fourth in the nation. But some fear that the state utilities commission is putting all this at risk.