California Solar’s Self-Sufficiency Is Well Underway

The California Energy Commission’s New Solar Homes Partnership program is paying off, according to its new case study. WIth over 14,000 solar systems installed mostly in Southern California across varying income levels, NSHP is “well on the way” to “establishing a self-sufficient solar industry” in the Golden State.

They key findings of the CEC’s case study (PDF) are illuminating, especially for other states looking to catch up to scorching California’s solar momentum. Market penetration of solar installations reached 27 percent (and rising) of new single-family homes, which greatly outperformed multifamily homes, that were issued permits in 2012. Although the program primarily served subdivisions, NSHP’s rebate design has also helped lower-income residents, whose affordable and multifamily housing received “higher average rebates per watt of solar capacity,” CEC’s case study explained.