New Berkeley Lab Report Assesses the Current and Future Role of State Renewables Portfolio Standards in Driving Solar Development in the U.S.

Photo of a solar panel in a field.
October 2010

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) released a new study Thursday documenting the design of and early experience with state-level renewables portfolio standard (RPS) programs in the United States that have been specifically designed to encourage solar energy.

The study finds that these state-level RPS programs have already proven to be an important driver for solar energy deployment in the U.S., resulting in more than 250 megawatts (MW) of new solar capacity through the end of 2009. "These impacts are expected to grow considerably in coming years; however, states and utilities are likely to face a number of challenges in meeting aggressive solar energy targets," says report co-author Ryan Wiser with Berkeley Lab's Environmental Energy Technologies Division.