Today, there is enough solar energy online in Colorado to power the entire city of Boulder—if everyone lived in separate houses.
With no shortage of sunny days, Colorado added 144 megawatts (MW) of solar electric capacity to the grid in 2015, for a total of 542 MW. That’s enough to power nearly 103,000 homes.
From a national standpoint, Colorado now ranks 12th in the U.S. in terms of solar photovoltaic (PV) projects installed, climbing up one spot from 2014, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).
Harnessing the sun’s energy will be increasingly important in Colorado as temperatures continue to escalate. From 1977 to 2006 statewide temperatures have increased about 2°F, reveals the report Climate Change in Colorado by the Western Water Assessment.
And there’s no cool down in the long-term forecast.
In fact, at the rate carbon dioxide emissions are being produced in Colorado, temperatures are projected to rise another 2.5°F by the year 2025. The escalation could wreak havoc from wildfires and water shortages to habitat destruction and widespread pine beetle devastation.