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San Jose holds third place in U.S. “Solar Star” rankings


In case there is any doubt that renewable energy is “a thing,” the sixth annual survey of solar energy in America’s biggest cities shows that the country now has more than 60 gigawatts (GW) of solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity installed – enough to power nearly one in every 11 homes in America.

According to Environment America Research & Policy Center’s “Shining Cities 2019” report, San Jose has been ranked #3 in the list of “Solar Star” cities that have more than 50 watts of solar PV capacity installed per capita.  

As the report notes, hundreds of thousands of Americans have invested in solar energy and millions more are ready to join them. America’s major cities have played a key role in the clean energy revolution and stand to reap tremendous benefits from solar energy. As population centers, they are major sources of electricity demand and, with millions of rooftops suitable for solar panels, they have the potential to be major sources of clean energy production as well.

Of the 57 cities surveyed in all six editions of this report, 79 percent more than doubled their total installed solar PV capacity between 2013 and 2018.” In 2013, only eight of the cities surveyed for this report had enough solar PV per capita to be ranked as “Solar Stars,” but now 23 cities have earned the title.

Solar installation at San Jose Mineta International Airport (SJC)

Honolulu leads the United States for solar power per person among cities surveyed, followed by San Diego, San Jose and Burlington, Vermont. California is the only state with two “Shining Star” cities – San Jose and San Diego. For more information about San Jose’s Climate Smart of Clean Energy programs, visit the website.

With 300 days of sunshine per year, San Jose is extremely friendly to harnessing solar power, and San Jose’s Climate Smart initiative has the ambitious goal of becoming the first U.S. city to chart a course to meet the greenhouse gas emission reduction targets of the International Paris Agreement. As part of that initiative, the City launched San Jose Clean Energy, our Community Choice Energy program that offers businesses and residents a sustainable energy alternative to shareholder-beholden public utilities.

Environment America Research & Policy Center is a 501(c)(3) organization, dedicated to protecting America’s air, water and open spaces.