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Virginia Cutting Our Solar Lead

North Carolinians are rightly proud of our position as the number-two solar power-generating state after California. But look out — Virginia may be gaining on us.

Even before last week’s state elections, a newly solar-friendly regulatory environment was producing a solar surge in Virginia. Since the 2017 passage of state legislation which made solar and wind facility standards more consistent and transparent, and which empowered local governments with more permitting authority, new projects have been flowing into the state. 

“Virginia’s a hotbed right now,” said Kenneth Niemann, senior vice president of development for Caden Energix, which over the last year has filed notices of intent for five solar facilities ranging in size from 20 to 82.5 megawatts. “Everybody’s looking for sites. Everybody’s looking to develop projects.”Now that Virginia’s elections have delivered legislative majorities to work with Gov. Ralph Northam’s 100% renewable energy goal, look to the Cavalier State to further step up its clean energy game. North Carolina, we can’t afford to rest on our initial progress, or we’ll fall behind. Help NCLCV build a pro-clean energy majority in our General Assembly next year!

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