News from InterSolar 2017

The 10th annual InterSolar North America conference in San Francisco drew over 15,000 attendees from 87 countries earlier this month. The event combined the solar and storage industries to cover market developments, financing, technical best practices, case studies, policy developments, and innovation.

A lot of people networking at conference.

The Blue Planet Energy team was delighted to participate, meet with our partners, continue to research ways to enhance our products and support the emerging storage markets. We also found continued interest in our Blue Ion products as a safe, reliable solution for storage.

Among the highlights and insights we want to share with our partners are:

  • Solar is now the #1 way that new energy generation is built on the grid and the overall solar penetration has just passed the 2% mark on the US grid!
  • GTM Research predicts solar+storage to grow much faster over the next five years, especially in grid-tied behind-the-meter installations, thanks to procurement targets, incentives, and pilot programs in several states. You can find the details in the white paper available here
  • California continues to lead the way and push a progressive renewables policy agenda. Senator De Leon, who introduced SB 100 that would mandate 100% renewable energy for the state by 2045 and accelerate renewable portfolio standards, spoke about several initiatives to level the playing field for Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) on the grid. Despite being the nation’s leader in storage projects, the policy organization CALSEIA believes the state is moving too slowly on integrating behind-the-meter storage. During the conference, the bill SB 700 was quietly killed in the Assembly without even having a vote. SB 700 would have created a stable, 10-year incentive program much like the successful California Solar Initiative and will now have to wait until 2018 for another chance to pass. Read more from CALSEIA
  • Jon Wellinghoff spoke about Nevada’s new law AB 405, which reinstates net metering for rooftop solar and puts the state on a progressive path for distributed energy independence with the first statutory “Right to Self-Generate Electricity.” This law guarantees the right to interconnect solar+storage with minimal interference from utilities, ensures rooftop solar is given priority and a fair price in resource acquisition (minimizing curtailing) and prohibits the utility from treating solar+storage customers as a different rate class. Quite an amazing turnaround from the 2015 removal of net metering (and a resulting 30+% drop in solar jobs last year) to the creation of a replicable solution for areas where net metering debates are happening! Read more on AB 405
  • NREL presented its research on solar+storage optimization for cost-effectiveness that analyzed over 25,000 cases in 17 cities. They identified a potential for over 5 million commercial customers in the US where solar+storage is currently economically viable, most notably characterized by rate structures with demand charges and TOU billing. Find more from the Solar+Storage Optimization project here