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Temperature Reading: The Current State of Solar Energy in Houston

Updated: Apr 12, 2023

Solar energy has evolved significantly over the past few decades—from the technologies, to government legislation and a general increase in public interest, the industry is taking off.

In the past few years alone, the government has renewed its commitment to tax incentives for going solar, the price of solar installation has reduced significantly, and just recently the California government passed a mandate for homes built past 2020 to have a solar system installed.

And locally, solar is thriving here in Houston. Here’s a temperature reading on the current state of solar in your city.

City picking up the slack

While the Texas government policies aren’t as supportive of solar energy as say California, the city of Houston does a great job picking up some of the slack with its own solar inventive programs.

Through net metering—the process of selling back excess solar energy back to the public grid—homes and businesses with solar panel systems can earn credits on their energy. Companies like Reliant, TXU, Amigo Energy and Green Mountain Power offer this net metering credit. For example, if you contribute one kilowatt hour to the grid, you can export that same kilowatt hour back at no cost.

In addition, Texas has a great property tax exemption for solar energy. Any value your solar system adds to your property is completely tax free.

An increasing rate of adoption

According to Environment Texas, solar energy usage grew by 19 percent in 2017 alone. Here are a few noteworthy figures:

- Houston currently has 4.1 watts of solar installed per capita

- It’s estimated that the city could generate up to 4.605 megawatts if solar panels were installed on all available small buildings

- The top city in Texas for solar energy is San Antonio, which produces a whopping 161 megawatts!

Paving the way

In Houston, the municipal government has recognized the potential of solar. Currently, 10 percent of the city’s operations are powered by solar, including the Hermann Park Zoo, waste water treatment plants and several of the Bush Intercontinental Airport terminals—with no sign of slowing down.

Want to jump aboard the solar train in Houston? Contact us for a customized quote for your home or business.

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