Leaders representing the U.S. solar energy industry reported the potential of solar energy to meet 15% of U.S. energy needs by 2020. The presentation was made at a United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change press briefing in the Bella Center, where the United Nations Climate Conference (COP15) is under way.
The ‘Expanding Solar Energy in the United States’ briefing was hosted by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and also featured a presentation of the Solar Bill of Rights, which SEIA says is needed to rapidly deploy solar energy to fight climate change and create jobs.
‘The evidence is clear on the problem of climate change: we need to do more and do it quicker,’ said Rhone Resch, president and CEO of SEIA. ‘Solar energy is our immediate solution. The solar industry is ready now to do more, do it faster and create jobs. The only things holding solar back are antiquated policies developed over the last century that favor polluting sources of energy.’
In a report released jointly with solar industry groups representing more than 90 countries, SEIA presented an accelerated solar deployment scenario for the U.S. to meet 15% of electricity needs by 2020. Twelve percent would come from solar electric power generated by photovoltaic solar panels and concentrating solar power plants. Another 3% of electricity would be offset by solar thermal systems.
The report also noted the key policies needed for the industry to scale up and compete effectively. These policies are conveyed in the Solar Bill of Rights, unveiled by Resch. The platform lays out eight basic rights that give the solar industry equal access to the electricity marketplace and levels the playing field with the fossil fuel industries.
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An archived webcast of the briefing is available here.