Green Business: NJ Leads Nation in Solar Installs

So what are we to make of this?

Amid feverish Trenton negotiations that the solar sky is falling, NJ’s first-quarter 2012 solar installation numbers look great.

As in leading-the-nation great.

Via the 1Q2012  Solar Energy Industries Association website and Report: (click for bigger)

1Q2012 U.S. Solar Installs

 

As usual, Tom Johnson does a stellar job of framing the issues and laying out competing stakeholder viewpoints.

Via NJSpotlight.com:

Solar In NJ Not So Dim After All, As Installations Boom
More than 18,000 solar systems came on line in the first three months of the year, the report said, or a total of 506 megawatts in the U.S. It marked the second highest quarter ever in the U.S., according to the study.

New Jersey installed a total of 174 megawatts of solar systems in the first quarter of 2012, or nearly one-third of the total arrays put in across the country, according to the U.S. Solar Market Insight, a publication put out by the Solar Energy Industries Association, an industry trade group.

All right then, so how does this party square with plummeting SREC prices?

Two things.

One, the 1Q2012 installs represent the fulfillment of 2011 orders and long-term contracts.

And two:

Costs to install solar continue to drop, falling by an overall average of 17.2 percent nationwide, although solar executives said the decline in New Jersey is more in the range of 30 percent because of the intense competition here.

Demand is driving innovation, which should be music to the ears of legislators on both sides of the aisle.