Historically a leader in energy production, policies and electricity prices, the Commonwealth of Virginia is lagging behind. By welcoming distributed renewable energy, which is more cost effective and reliable, other states are realizing an influx of jobs and other benefits that accompany this rapidly growing industry.
Virginia cannot afford to sit on the sideline as opportunities to create cheaper and more secure energy – and a brighter economic future for ratepayers – pass us by. The Commonwealth has the unique opportunity to generate a greater amount of renewable energy at a more efficient rate and at a lower cost than the majority of states by expanding energy sources to include renewable energy production, such as solar and wind. Virginia is being left behind: At the end of 2014, Virginia had only 14 MW of solar energy installed across the Commonwealth. Maryland had 242 MW and Pennsylvania had 247 MW.
Many think that renewable energy is more expensive than natural gas or other conventional sources, but, truthfully, it is frequently cheaper than non-renewable energy for both ratepayers and utility companies.
Distributed renewable energy generation is even less expensive when utilities don’t build the production facilities themselves, because the construction costs of these facilities are borne by individuals and entities other than the utility’s ratepayers.
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