Your Name Professor Name Subject Date Massachusetts: Big Steps Toward Renewable Energy Introduction The U.S. is the leading energy consumer in the world. The universally accepted unit of measurement in energy is British Thermal Units (BTU). One BTU is equivalent to the energy produced by burning a kitchen match…
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None of the three is renewable and they also pose great dangers to the environment (Hargreaves). Although there is no fixed computation, different sources estimate another 50-120 years of supply of these sources of energy (McLamb). These could go shorter if the dependence accelerates. This is the primary reason that makes it critical for everyone to develop renewable sources of energy. Just like any revolutionary idea, renewable sources of energy are getting their fair share of criticism such as the high cost of initial installation. In the United States, Massachusetts is one of the States that are vigilant in pushing the growth of renewable energy sources. Solar panels, wind turbines and geothermal energy are the top three sources that are being developed. Below is critical examination of the current state of renewable sources of energy, legislations that are helping push it forward and the costs and savings that each source requires. Solar Panels Traditional energy sources are slowly dwindling away, which one of the main reasons for sky rocketing energy bills experienced by most resident in Massachusetts. As a way to overcome this financial debacle and also to safe guard the energy needs of the nation, the government has look for ways to establish more cost efficient and renewable energy sources for the residents of Massachusetts. ...
Current State of Solar Energy Solar power installation figures in Massachusetts are around 2,000 solar panels, which generate around 22 megawatts of electricity. Those figures are impressive but not big enough compared to the target the government has set for itself according to its energy portfolio standard. An energy portfolio standard is a regulation which seeks to increase the production of energy from renewable energy sources like solar, wind, geothermal, etc. The Massachusetts renewable energy portfolio standard (RPS) was created to legislate the restructuring of the electric utility industry. In the year 2003, the RPS required that 1% of electricity in Massachusetts should be generated from renewable energy sources. Thereafter, the percentage should increase by 0.5% every year up to 2009. After that, the annual percentage increase should be 1%, until suspended by the Massachusetts Division of Energy Resources (DOER). With those types of targets in mind, the government would like to increase from the current production of 22 Mw to 400MW by the year 2020. This is quite a tall order to meet, and one the solution that Massachusetts has been able to use, is the establishment of the Common Wealth Solar Rebate Program. This program provides rebates through a non-competitive application process for the installation of solar (photovoltaic) panels, done by professional, licensed contractors at public, commercial, institutional and industrial facilities. Eligibility is limited to host customers and project sites, located in Massachusetts and be a customer of either a municipal lighting plant or a Massachusetts electric distribution utility. Under this program, there are several rebate systems that encourage both utility
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