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New Orleans Ranks in Top 10 Leading Cities for Solar Power

According to a new study released by the Environment America Research & Policy Center, New Orleans is among the most progressive cities in the country for use of solar power. The report, titled “Shining Cities 2017: How Smart Local Policies Are Expanding Solar Power in America,” ranks New Orleans alongside cities like Honolulu, San Jose, and Phoenix in the top 10 list for installed solar power capacity per capita. 


In the study, New Orleans takes the ninth spot across the nation to be the regional leader for per capita solar capacity in the South Central region. Research also lists the Crescent City 14th in total installed solar PV capacity across the country. The cities highlighted in the report lead the nation in strong pro-solar public policies. 


In a follow-up statement from the Environment America team, New Orleans is unique in the country for introducing policies that will spur on solar growth. According to The Solar Foundation, the number of New Orleanians working in the solar field has jumped 36 percent from 2015 to 2016 — a testament to the developing economic and environmental benefits of energy efficiency. In 2015, city officials unanimously passed a resolution to “improv[e] overall energy efficiency in the city” via support for public policies encouraging the local solar industry growth.  


Challenges persist in introducing solar technology to the rest of Louisiana. Environment America noted that state lawmakers reduced solar tax credits in the last two years, taking away a major residential incentive to go solar — despite the fact that state and federal tax credits brought in onver $100 million to Louisiana state economy, with more than $33 million being attributed to the installations of solar technology. 

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