Idaho, also known as Gem state, has few fossil fuel reserves, but it has many renewable energy resources, mainly solar, wind and hydropower. In Idaho, solar energy is in its budding state. In 2016, the first utility-scale PV electricity generation project was launched. In 2019, utility-scale facilities contributed to almost 90% of Idaho’s solar PV electricity generation. Currently, solar power’s contribution to the state’s energy mix stands at a meager 3%.  

Idaho is blessed with a solar-friendly landscape. On average, some areas receive 5.5 hours of peak sunlight which goes up to 7 peak sun-hours during June and July. The majority of Idaho’s solar generation potential remains untapped. In 2016, National Renewable Energy Laboratory claimed that the rooftops in Idaho have the potential to generate 4,700 MW of electricity in a year, which amounts to 26.4% of all electricity needed in Idaho. 

According to estimates, 87% of buildings are viable for electricity generation through solar energy. This can result in a power generation of 7.5 Million MWh AC per year. As a result, considerable carbon dioxide savings of 2 Million metric tons can be achieved in a year. 

Following statistics reveal the state of solar in Idaho in a glimpse:

  • Solar Installed (MW): 590.3
  • National Ranking: 27th (38th in 2020)
  • Percentage of State’s Electricity from Solar: 3.63%
  • Solar Jobs: 486
  • Solar Companies in State: 32 (1 Manufacturer, 20 Installers/Developers, 11 Others)
  • Total Solar Investment in State: 853 million
  • Prices have fallen 11% over the last 5 years
  • Growth Projection and Ranking: 433 MW over the next 5 years (ranks 42nd)
  • Number Of Installations: 10,326

For the fast proliferation of solar energy, the Idaho government has launched a number of solar-friendly financing programs, as listed below:

State Energy Loan Program:

The Idaho Governor’s Office of Energy and Mineral Resources has launched an initiative to provide low-interest energy loans for businesses. Businesses that wish to install energy-efficient products and develop renewable energy projects can claim low-interest loans up to $100,00. 

Federal Renewable Electricity Investment Tax Credit (ITC) for Solar:

This is a federal tax that can be claimed on the federal income taxes of individuals and corporations. When this tax is claimed, 26% of the initial cost of solar installations is reimbursed.  

Need For Solar Panel Disposal Solution

The true potential of solar power in Idaho is far greater than its current status. Ambitious targets and solar-friendly legislation have placed Idaho on a path of becoming an energy-sufficient state. 

However, the rapid proliferation of photovoltaic technology also raises the alarming question about the decommissioning and disposal of end-of-life solar panels. Most experts agree that recycling old solar panels is the most cost-effective and eco-friendly waste disposal option for solar waste. 

If you are looking for decommissioning or large-scale solar panel recycling solutions in Idaho, contact We Recycle Solar. We provide recycling solutions for solar panels, batteries, and other equipment. Our processes are safe, efficient, and compliant with all federal and state laws.

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Unless otherwise noted, all data from SEIA/GTM Research U.S. Solar Market Insight