Clean Power

Published on January 15th, 2013 | by John Farrell


The Most Amazing, Interactive US Solar Grid Parity Map

January 15th, 2013 by  

Within a decade, 300,000 megawatts of unsubsidized local solar power could compete with utility electricity prices in almost every state, enough clean energy to produce 10% of U.S. electricity. Grid parity is building like a relentless wave, but how much solar is at parity today? In 2016? In 2020? On homes or businesses? With incentives or without?

Answer all of these questions with the Greatest, Most Interactive U.S. Solar Grid Parity Map from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance.  Click the link above to interact.

For more on the data behind the map, see ILSR’s Rooftop Revolution resources.

This post originally appeared on ILSR’s Energy Self-Reliant States blog.

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About the Author

directs the Democratic Energy program at ILSR and he focuses on energy policy developments that best expand the benefits of local ownership and dispersed generation of renewable energy. His seminal paper, Democratizing the Electricity System, describes how to blast the roadblocks to distributed renewable energy generation, and how such small-scale renewable energy projects are the key to the biggest strides in renewable energy development.   Farrell also authored the landmark report Energy Self-Reliant States, which serves as the definitive energy atlas for the United States, detailing the state-by-state renewable electricity generation potential. Farrell regularly provides discussion and analysis of distributed renewable energy policy on his blog, Energy Self-Reliant States (, and articles are regularly syndicated on Grist and Renewable Energy World.   John Farrell can also be found on Twitter @johnffarrell, or at

  • I just removed several comments because they look like spam coming from one source (one location) but under different names and presumably fake email address. If you’ve got some information, perspective, or facts to share, please do so, but don’t spam our site with misinformation and deceit packaged under a variety of names and email addresses. Thank You.

  • Alan

    Grid parity will not work, just reading an article from down under Australia, the cost of power has been driven so high, that demand has fell so low, they shut down a large number of power station, however that has caused the spot price electricity to reach $15,000 a MW in peek time from the limited base load power sources coal fired energy. We still face the same problems, grid solar power is not delivering the energy that is need nor has it driven the cost down for electricity as they said it would, it having the total opposite effect, making electricity more unaffordable for even those with PV on the roof.

    • Bob_Wallace

      Your claim makes no sense.

      Yes, it is possible that in a few isolated cases the grid won’t be ready for a large influx of renewable input and that will cause some difficulties for the grid managers. But there is no reason for those difficulties to be wide-spread or long-lasting.

      By now all grid managers should be aware that the transition is coming and should have developed plans for how to deal with changes.

      Getting some rapid cycling gas turbines/CCNG plants on line and/or bringing more storage can eliminate the need to use any coal at all.

      Wind and solar are driving down the cost of electricity in parts of the world. That is where we are headed – toward a renewable grid on which electricity is cheaper. We’ll get through the growing pains. In a few incidences grid managers will drop the ball and incur some short term financial hits. They will either learn quickly or be replaced by smarter people.

      • Mark

        I don’t know where you are getting your facts from, but I haven’t seen grid solar power bring down the price of electricity, Italy, Germany, Span, England, Australia are just a few examples in which electricity has increased under large amount of renewable. Take Australia, the federal government pulled the plug on solar power, as it found that just grid solar power alone was driving the price up from 10 cents kw/h to now over 70 cents kw/h depending on what state one lives, grid solar power caused price distortion of the energy market.

        Where is the link to solar power brings down electricity price?

        • Bob_Wallace
          • Noreen

            bob, That not a real creditable source of information is there a
            newspaper that state price of electricity have came down due to solar power.

          • Bob_Wallace

            This site referencing a report from “Germany’s Institute for Future Energy Systems (IZES), conducted on behalf of of the German Solar Industry Association (BSW-Solar)” is not a credible source but a newspaper would be?

          • Wendy

            It been reported that Germany had coal import rose by 5% to a record high 4.1 million tonnes in November, figure that grid solar power is not working like the Germans claim.

          • Bob_Wallace

            Germany’s new coal burning plants are replacing (not adding to) the older plants that either have been or will soon be decommissioned. Moreover, by 2020, 18.5 gigawatts of coal power capacity will be decommissioned, whereas only 11.3 gigawatts will be newly installed.

            Furthermore those plants will be more efficient, releasing less CO2 per unit electricity produced than are the ones they are replacing.

            I seem to recall that Germany is importing more hard coal and burning less of their domestic soft coal as one more way to reduce the problem of using coal.

            Germany has to deal with the political reality that their source for natural gas is Russia. They cannot afford to become too dependent on Russia so in the short term they will need to use some coal. I think any thinking person would agree that Germany has chosen a reasonable path to getting their nuclear plants shut down and their CO2 levels cut at the same time.

            We should all be doing as well as the Germans.

        • Jenny

          I tend to agree that the information that bob supplied is not real facts, my electricity bill is very high because of direct taxes from solar grid energy the flows on to the bill, I think that bob doesn’t under stand what going on out there in the market places. I under stand if you have solar grid power that the price would come down for that person been given government payments, but many people have to pay for that one person system on the grid.

  • van otto vanson

    There is new solar cell technology that produces an AC current not DC. German scientist say that it would make the current solar cell obsolete doing away with grid tied inverters, the self oscillating solar cell when connected to the main grid will self oscillated according to the main frequency, thus producing pure sine wave, with out the current harmonic with grid tied inverters and no power loss.

  • ann

    Who going to regulated all this solar power been feed back into the grid,if there no controls, after the grid is damage.

    • Dimitar Mirchev

      Or promote Grid Storage…

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