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New York Solar Boom

With New York state leaders negotiating this month whether to include Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposed Green New Deal in the new state budget, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables released the 2018 Solar Market Insight (SMI) Report showing strong growth in New York’s solar market with 373 MW of new development last year. While the report shows steady growth to date, it also reveals that without further action from lawmakers, New York will fall well short of its clean energy goals outlined in Governor Cuomo’s state of the state.

New York’s annual installment ranks #6 nationally, a 6-spot jump from 2017, but New York’s overall solar market ranks 10th in the nation, showing there is still room for improvement. New York overall jumped up one spot from 2017, generating over $4.7 billion in investments, and sustaining nearly 10,000 jobs at more than 850 companies across the state. That success underscores the potential for the governor’s proposed Green New Deal to continue accelerating the transition to a 100% clean energy economy.

Governor Cuomo has set a goal of 6 GW of solar installed by 2025. The report shows in 2018 the US installed 10.6 GW of solar, giving New York a roadmap to reach the Governor’s solar goals. States that saw growth created favorable environments to growth by committing to solar with codified incentives and using those to signal market favorability to solar industries. New York is expected to see growth in 2019 and 2020 due to strong community actions by state regulators.

Without legislative action, New York is unlikely to reach its goal of 6 gigawatts (GW) of distributed solar, or enough to power one million solar homes, by 2025. That goal would require significantly more annual solar development. In light of Solar Market Insight Report, the Million Solar Strong New York Coalition is calling on lawmakers to double down on its commitment to climate and clean energy leadership and codify into law Governor Cuomo’s 6GW solar goal in order to drive the regulatory and market changes needed to accelerate solar growth further.


  • New York’s annual gains rank number #6 nationally in 2018, a 6-spot jump from #12 in 2017.

  • New York’s overall solar ranks #10 nationally in 2018, a 1-spot jump from #11 in 2017.

  • 14% growth in solar installations nationally predicted for 2019

  • “New York bucked the national trend, experiencing record installations in 2018. This was the result of a waning pipeline of grandfathered remote net-metering projects becoming interconnected, despite being constructed in 2017. Meanwhile, community solar continues to support non-residential PV.”

The U.S. Solar Market Insight is a quarterly publication of Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables Inc. and SEIA. Each quarter, the authors collect granular data on the U.S. solar market from nearly 200 utilities, state agencies, installers, and manufacturers. More information on methodology is available at

Labels: New York,Cuomo,Solar Market Insight,photovoltaics,policy,clean energy

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