Wednesday, May 24, 2017

DEP: Statewide Solar Energy Planning Group To Meet June 8 In Pittsburgh

The Finding Pennsylvania’s Solar Future stakeholder initiative will holds its second meeting on June 8 at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.
Participants in this statewide solar energy initiative led by the Department of Environmental Protection will help analyze models of current and potential solar energy development.
The meeting will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and is open to the public in the Rangos Room at CMU, 5000 Forbes Avenue. Registration is required. The morning presentations, before participants break into work groups for the afternoon, will be streamed live.
More than 100 state and local government leaders, consumer advocates, utility and business leaders, experts in the solar industry, academics, and others interested in solar energy are participating in the 30-month project, called Finding Pennsylvania’s Solar Future.
“Pennsylvania has the expertise to create a plan to increase solar-powered electricity, bringing environmental and economic benefits broadly to residents, organizations, and businesses,” said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell.
Since their first meeting in March, participants have begun data modeling to reflect the state’s solar market today and a business-as-usual outcome for the solar market in 10 years. Currently just .15 percent of electricity in the state comes from solar power.
An alternative, or alpha, model will forecast what Pennsylvania’s energy portfolio could look like in 2030 if the 10 percent goal is achieved.
Participants will analyze the models for opportunities and challenges in regulation, market transformation and business models, and systems and operations. Their recommendations will further refine the alpha model, which will serve as the basis for setting plan goals.
The goal of Finding Pennsylvania’s Solar Future is to create a shared vision statewide for the most effective ways Pennsylvania can reach its objective of 10 percent of in-state electricity sales generated by in-state solar energy.
A draft plan will be available for public comment by mid-2018, with a final plan released after comments are considered.  
The meeting is being coordinated by project partner PennFuture.
Finding Pennsylvania’s Solar Future is funded by a $550,000 award from the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative.
For more information, visit DEP’s Finding Pennsylvania’s Solar Future webpage.

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