By Patrick O’Grady for Phoenix Business Journal
Arizona finally placed ahead of New Jersey in terms of solar installations in the second quarter as utility-scale operations drove the state to second place in the U.S.
The U.S. Solar Market Insight Report for the quarter from the Solar Energy Industries Association and GTM Research showed Arizona installed 172.7 megawatts of solar power, trailing only California, which installed 216.9 megawatts.
Arizona consistently has been coming in third place in the quarterly reports behind both California and New Jersey. The report shows how much solar power is being installed around the country.
The state’s jump was impressive over the first quarter, when installations amounted to 63 megawatts, marking a 174 percent increase.
Much of the increase was driven by utility installations, which accounted for the vast majority of installed power in Arizona during the quarter.
The industry is seeing continued uptake from lease expansion on the residential side, but seeing struggles on the commercial side in terms of installations.
There also is a question of how much longer utility-scale adoption will continue as utilities have slowed their purchases over the past several months. Some, such as Arizona Public Service Co., are close to reaching goals for renewable energy standards and won’t have to buy much more in the next few years.
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