The Rising Tide of State-Supported Renewable Energy Projects: Deployment Results from the CESA Database, 1998-2011

October 29, 2012

by Peregrine Energy Group for CESA

This report is a comprehensive analysis of trends in state clean energy development. Among its main findings, the report confirms that state clean energy funds have remained major drivers of renewable energy development in the U.S., funding nearly 130,000 projects and adding nearly 4.8 new gigawatts of clean power to the grid since 1998.

The report draws from the CESA National Clean Energy Database, an ongoing effort to collect and maintain key metrics on state investment in renewable energy projects. The CESA Database is designed to centralize information from across the country, to simplify state clean energy program reporting and administration, and to make it easier to track important market measures, such as installed cost and capacity, across projects and technologies and over time.

Key findings from this year’s CESA Database report include:

  • 2011 saw the most state-funded clean energy projects installed in a single year. State clean energy funds supported 32,734 clean energy projects in 2011, an 18 percent increase over 2010 and almost twice the number of projects installed in 2009.
  • Since 1998, states have invested almost $3.4 billion in public funds in renewable energy projects and successfully leveraged almost an additional $12.5 billion. Total investment over this period was $15.9 billion.
  • Projects supported by state clean energy funds are avoiding significant CO2 emissions. Since 1998, state funds have supported the installation of almost 3.9 gigawatts of clean energy generation capacity. Each year, these projects generate almost 10.7 gigawatt hours of energy and avoid 8.1 million tons of CO2, the equivalent of taking about 1.4 million cars off the road.