US Could be a Solar Nation by 2026
Oct. 19, 2011 - sustainablebusiness.com
If the US had installed solar at the same pace as Germany, most of the 10 Mountain West states could be entirely powered by solar today, and the US could be a 100% solar nation by 2026.
He points to the fact that, in the past two years alone, Germany has installed over 10,000 megawatts of solar panels, enough to power two million American homes.
In a 2009 report which he updated last year, Farrell wrote, "At least three-fifths of the 50 states could meet all their internal electricity needs from renewable energy generated inside their borders. Every state with a renewable energy mandate can meet it with in-state renewable fuels."
Beyond rooftops, there's no reason to cover vast amounts of undeveloped land in the US, he says. "On either side of 4 million miles of roads, the US has approximately 60 million acres (90,000 square miles) of right of way. If 10% of that were used, over 2 million megawatts of roadside solar PV could provide close to 100% of the electricity consumption in the country."
"The Germans have found the profitable marriage between their energy and environmental policy," Farrell writes. "It's time for America to discover the same opportunity."