ACORE state-by-state guide provides valuable information

By Erin Voegele | November 29, 2012

The American Council on Renewable Energy recently published a guide outlining the status of renewable energy on a state-by-state level. The report, titled “Renewable Energy in the 50 States,” can be downloaded for free on the ACORE website

Each state has a two-page spread in the guide, which includes information on installed capacity, the state market, economic development, and state policies. Regarding installed capacity, the guide provides numbers for a variety of renewable energy types, including biomass power, biodiesel, ethanol, ocean, hydropower, geothermal, concentrated solar thermal, solar photovoltaic, and wind.

The market segment includes facts and data on the local industry. For example, the market section for Michigan points out that the state of Michigan and Michigan universities are establishing and conducting research and development programs with the state’s companies active in bioenergy, solar, wind and others, often in collaboration with the U.S. DOE and national laboratories. It also highlights anaerobic digestion facilities that are operational within the state.

The economic development section notes the quantity of “green” jobs a state has, along with private sector investment and recovery act funding. For example, New York is home to 248,526 green jobs and $104.2 million in venture capital and private equity financing for renewable energy projects.

Each state entry also features a map outlining its biomass resources and production potential. North Dakota, for example, is shown to have a biopower production potential of 8,216 GWh.  

Finally, the policy section outlines state-enacted programs, including tax incentives, mandates and renewable energy programs. The Hawaii policy section addresses the state’s renewable portfolio standard (RPS). With regard to bioenergy, it also points out a state-run loan program that provides funding for biogas, biofuel, aquaculture-based PV, hydroelectric and wind projects.

I applaud ACORE for putting together such a comprehensive overview of state-level renewable energy data. This document, which ACORE intends to update periodically, is an invaluable reference for those in the renewable energy sector. It offers project developers, investors, and others a means to quickly reference the basic statistics and policies of each state’s renewable energy industry.

In addition to the PDF guide, the ACORE website also features an interactive map with links to each state’s data.