Chart of the Day: Community Solar Applications in 2015

Via Fresh Energy’s blog, here’s a chart showing the number of “community solar” applications that are in the pipeline since Xcel Energy began the program in 2014. (This is accurate as of December.)

community solar applications

While there’s a lot of interest in the program (which allows individuals or organizations to purchase solar electricity without having to build it themselves, often in the exurbs), actually following through on construction is a bit slow.

Here’s Fresh Energy’s Allen Gleckner’s take on the situation:

As community solar proposals continued to come in, applications bottlenecked with Xcel, frustrating developers working on the projects and customers who were eager to utilize a solar option in their communities. To date, with more than 1500 applications currently in the system, only one small 40 kilowatt community solar garden is in operation – enough to supply electricity for about five to seven households. After months of working at the Public Utilities Commission to get the program rules right, we’ve seen things improve slightly. There are now 46 applications (totaling roughly 43 megawatts) that have signed agreements with Xcel to begin construction and 800 applications at 175 project sites that are currently somewhere in the process of being reviewed for interconnection to the electric grid.

Maybe next year this chart will look a bit different.

Bill Lindeke

About Bill Lindeke

Pronouns: he/him

Bill Lindeke has writing blogging about sidewalks and cities since 2005, ever since he read Jane Jacobs. He is a lecturer in Urban Studies at the University of Minnesota Geography Department, the Cityscape columnist at Minnpost, and has written multiple books on local urban history. He was born in Minneapolis, but has spent most of his time in St Paul. Check out Twitter @BillLindeke or on Facebook.