Georgia Emerging as a Solar-Power Leader

Florida utilities say solar doesn’t work in the Sunshine State, but it sure does in Georgia

Tampa Bay Times, January 30, 2015

The Sunshine State is losing its shine to something peachy.

While Florida energy policy impedes solar power development, Georgia promotes it: The Peach State, with a population half that of its neighbor to the south, expects to reach 900 megawatts of solar power generation by the end of 2016, almost twice Florida’s projected total by that time.

“Georgia is going to wind up being a state that everyone looks toward,” said Ken Johnson, a vice president and spokesman for the Solar Energy Industries Association in Washington, D.C. He said the reason why Georgia is emerging as a solar-power leader is that regulators and utilities have embraced solar as part of the solution for energy demand rather than rejecting it as not cost-effective.

“They see solar as a friend,” Johnson said, “and not an enemy.”

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Solar is the enemy to Florida’s investor-owned utilities, a technology that threatens their bottom line.

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