North Carolina Is Crazy About Solar Energy

North Carolina has 803 Megawatts of solar in development or under construction, according to consulting firm SNL Financial.

That’s third most in the country behind California and Nevada, enough to power about 300,000 homes at peak hours (the breakdown does not show the residential/commercial/utility breakdown).

Check out the map: it’s nuts.

Here’s a shot of a 6.4 MW farm in western Catawba County from Strata Solar:

At 12.5%, the state has the most aggressive renewable portfolio standard in The South, and GTM Research projects it will end 2013 ranking third in the nation for utility-scale solar.

The N.C. Solar Center in Raleigh just hosted a conference in which an SVP for a utility equipment maker said the industry in the state and elsewhere was in “almost a panic mode.”

We’ve discussed why previously: solar usually results in “disintermediation,” and the whole point of a utility is to serve as the medium between a power supply and its user. Charlotte-based Duke Energy, the country’s largest utility, has been trying to catch up through its own solar projects.

But this appears to be a swiftly moving target.

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