Nevada’s Renewable Energy Sector Faces Some Clouds And — Perhaps Soon — Sunny Days
After more than a decade of growth, Nevada’s fast-growing renewable energy sector faces storm clouds. Globally, the COVID-19 pandemic has cost the sector thousands of jobs, is delaying projects large and small, and in many areas is killing sales. But Nevada enjoys the sunniest skies in the nation, the momentum of a decade-long boom in projects and a state government pushing for more. Officials said Nevada will weather the current turbulence and meet its new standard to source half its electricity from renewables by 2030. And already, some local solar panel installers report a rebound in activity.
Solar power is Nevada’s biggest source of renewable energy, leading wind, hydro-electric, geo-thermal and other sources. The state has approved nine large solar projects since December 2018 that will supply power directly to NV Energy, the state’s largest utility. Together, the projects represent more than $3 billion in investment, NV Energy reported. Neither the company, owned by Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway Energy, nor project backers responded to questions about how the pandemic could affect plans to bring those projects online in the coming years.