Map Projects When U.S. Cities Will Achieve Grid Parity for Solar


If energy cost trends remain consistent — with the price of retail electricity rising and solar power falling — solar energy could become cheaper than power from the grid in most major U.S. metropolitan areas by 2027, according to a recent projection.

In a new map published on the Energy Self-Reliant States website, energy policy analyst John Farrell has predicted which U.S. cities will achieve so-called “grid parity” first — and the order in which other cities will follow through 2027.

Farrell, a researcher with the group, Local Self-Reliance, based his projections on recent regional retail rates for electricity, which have seen the cost of solar energy decline by an average of 7 percent per year and the cost of retail electricity increase by 2 percent annually.

If that trend holds, Farrell predicts that San Diego will become the first city to achieve grid parity, in 2013, followed by New York City in 2015. By 2020, 17 metropolitan areas nationwide will have reached grid parity; the number will jump to more than 40 by 2027, Farrell projects.

Article appearing courtesy Yale Environment 360.

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