Each year, the proportion of renewable energy used to power U.S. homes and businesses has increased. The U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration (EIA) releases a monthly electric power report to keep up with this evolving energy infrastructure. This February’s report includes milestones for solar development across the nation — growing over 40% in 2017 over 2016 — solar energy is now the fastest growing segment of energy generation in the U.S.
Although the electric car was introduced over 100 years ago, only a fraction of cars sold to U.S. customers today are considered electric vehicles (EVs). Due to the environmental benefits of EVs, there has historically been some efforts to incentivize EV development. Now, Massachusetts's proportion of EVs may begin to climb due to a proposal set forth by Mass. Attorney General Maura Healey.
A report published in December 2017 by the Department of Energy outlines individual state’s commitments to modernizing their electricity grids. Modernization is crucial for utilities to integrate new, cleaner, and more efficient technologies. Due to variance in state agendas, some states are preparing better than others to modernize their electricity grids and integrate new and cost effective technologies.
The Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) has recently rolled out regulations governing a new solar incentive program that aims to develop 1,600 MW of new solar capacity in the state. The new program has been dubbed the Solar Massachusetts Renewable Target Program, or the SMART Program for short. Solar industry advocates have praised the Mass. DOER for its policy innovation, but understanding the new program is likely difficult for non-industry folks. Let’s try to break it down: