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Thursday, March 14, 2013

2012 a record-breaker for solar power


According to a new report, America broke records in terms of installed solar capacity last year, jumping to 11 percent of total global installations. [Greentech Media]

It may not compare to the German solar market. But the U.S. is definitely becoming a major force globally when it comes to new installations.

According to the 2012 Solar Market Insight report from GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association, America installed 3,313 megawatts of solar capacity last year — accounting for 11 percent of total global installations. That’s up from 7 percent in 2011.

“From 2004 until 2010, America’s global share had been stuck in a tight band. The U.S. significantly broke that in 2012,” said Shayle Kann, vice president at GTM Research. “Our forecasts put us at 13 percent in 2013.”

While there’s obviously a long way to go yet to get to where we should be, I’ll point out what I always point out when stories like this are reported: you didn’t notice a thing.

It didn’t cause roaming brownouts, it didn’t crash the American economy, it didn’t result in hardships for families. It’s just a different way of generating power — one that’s clean, renewable, and cheap. More photovoltaic generation is both a natural advancement in technology and a response to actual conditions in the reality.

Lo and behold, contrary to what you’ll hear from the right, green tech is not the end of the world. It’s just progress.

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