Carson City, Sparks Nevada Solar: Need to Knows
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Nevada has always been ideal for solar installation, but today it’s different. Solar installations have spread throughout the state. There are three major reasons for this unprecedented growth.
Lasting Net Metering Changes for Nevada Solar Customers
The 2015 net metering bait and switch was devastating for Nevadans. What made it worse was that those who already had solar installed weren’t protected. This policy change had injurious effects on everyone.
Understandably, many have felt hesitant about renewable energy ever since. Assembly Bill 405, however, has restored hope.
AB 405 and What It Means for Nevadans
Governor Sandoval approved several solar-related bills in 2017. AB 405, however, has received the most attention. This bill has reinstated net metering and guaranteed protections for solar customers in Sparks, Carson City, Reno, Las Vegas, and other cities across Nevada.
Net Metering Reinstated – One of the Many Boons of Solar Power
First, let’s talk about how this bill reinstated net metering. Now all solar customers get between 95 and 75 percent of the retail price for their net excess energy.
All those who install solar under one of these tiered rates will have the same rate for the next 20 years. Any changes made to net metering in the future will not hurt past installations.
Protection for Solar Customers
In the past, those that had solar had extra charges. These charges have disguised themselves as a way to balance the system. In reality, however, they have punished people for choosing a different power source.
Yes, it does cost money to keep the grid maintained. However, charging people who use it less frequently extra is not the answer.
The AB 405 sees this injustice and makes amends for it. Solar customers will no longer have fees that other utility customers don’t have.
Insurance for the Future Of Solar
With AB 405, all Nevada citizens now have the right to generate their power at the retail rate. Now there is a guarantee that you won’t have to pay for the electricity you no longer use. Solar arrays and battery backup can now save money in the same way as energy-efficient products.
Peak Sun-hours Impact on Solar Installation in Nevada
The hours when the sun is highest in the sky will generate the most energy. These hours determine the amount of optimal power you can get in a day.
Correlation Between Peak Sun-Hours and Solar Arrays
Every peak sun-hour is an hour where the sun produces 1,000 watts of energy per square meter. These hours do not occur all day long, which is why they are so important. Areas that have more peak sun hours have the potential to generate more power each day.
How Nevada Measures Up
Where you are on the globe has a direct correlation with the number of peak sun hours. Places near the equator have more peak sun hours because the sun is higher in the sky for longer.
The latest map produced by NREL showed that Nevada has between 5-8.5 peak sun hours. Las Vegas has between 7-7.8 hours. Reno, Carson City and Sparks have between 6.4-7 hours.
In comparison to national averages, Nevada is one of the states with far more direct sunlight. States across the nation have anywhere between 0.5-8.5 peak sun hours a day. Most have about five hours.
Time Value of Money (TVM): The Cost of Dragging Your Feet Getting Nevada Solar
Although the timing isn’t right for everyone, you can’t wait forever, or you miss out on maximizing the value of solar savings over what would be a longer time span. If you’re in a position where solar is possible, it’s time to take action.
Nevada Net Metering Rates Won’t Last Forever
A catch has come with the net metering changes. For every 80 megawatts of solar, the rate decreased by seven percent. In 2020 it reached the 75 percent floor. While those who install now and in the past have guaranteed rates, future solar rates may change.
Although we strongly encourage customers to weigh the pros and cons of solar for their situation. Don’t miss your chance by putting it off once you know.