Bay Area solar power still needs to play a much bigger part in the state’s and the country’s energy infrastructures, but two new reports indicate that we’re at least heading in the right direction. Although the world will still derive 80 percent of its energy from fossil fuels in 2040, recent research suggests that this trend could be reversing.

A report released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration states that the fastest growing energy sources over the next few decades will be renewables and nuclear power, which will expand at a rate of 2.5 percent annually. Most of the increase will be in wind and hydropower, with solar still playing a major role.

At the same time, another study released by NPD Solarbuzz, a market research firm that concentrates on the solar energy industry, says that solar generating capacity in the U.S. has passed 10 gigawatts (GW), a benchmark that has been passed by only three other countries: Germany, Italy and China.

“The US has now joined an elite group of maturing solar PV markets that have accumulated more than 10 GW of installed capacity,” said Christopher Sunsong, analyst at NPD Solarbuzz, in a news release. “Only Germany, Italy, and China have more installed PV capacity than the US. The US is only the fourth country to reach the 10 GW milestone of installed PV capacity.”

This growth is being accelerated by the millions of homeowners who are discovering the financial and environmental benefits afforded by solar power. To find out more information about how your residence can take advantage of this technology, contact West Coast Solar today.