Nevada businesses and clean energy advocates today applauded new long-range plans introduced by the state’s largest electric utility, NV Energy, that include significant increases in solar energy generation, energy storage, and energy efficiency.
NV Energy today announced its three-year Integrated Resource Plan, for the first time combining Northern and Southern Nevada’s electric systems, and the utility pledged to double the amount of clean energy it delivers to customers to more than 1,500 megawatts, mostly of solar, by the end of 2021.
The plan is an unprecedented investment in homegrown clean energy with more than 1,000 megawatts of new solar and 100 megawatts of battery storage, as well as increased investments in energy efficiency.
“With solar power and other renewable energy available at historically low prices and battery storage making solar energy available 24/7, we are encouraged that NV Energy is proposing to bring more renewable power online,” said Sarah Cottrell Propst, executive director of the Interwest Energy Alliance, a non-profit trade association that represents the nation's leading companies in the renewable energy industry. “Investing in renewable energy will boost Nevada's economy, save consumers and businesses money, and reduce harmful pollution.”
Jessica Scott, Interior West director with Vote Solar, a non-profit organization working for state policies and programs to shift electric grids to clean energy, noted that the resource plan calls for six new large-scale solar plants in Nevada, three of which will incorporate energy storage, while providing for expanded rooftop solar opportunities for residential consumers.
“The solar industry has already put thousands of Nevadans to work. NV Energy's new commitment will promote that legacy of good jobs and economic growth,” Scott said. “Nevada consumers have demanded access to affordable, reliable clean power, and adding 1,000 megawatts of new solar is a great down payment on that future.”
Howard Geller, executive director of the Southwest Energy Efficiency Project (SWEEP), welcomed the plan's emphasis on energy efficiency.
"This plan includes a significant expansion of energy efficiency programs. And while we can always do more to save electricity, this plan charts a course toward lower energy use and greater cost savings for families and businesses," Geller said.