Solar Power in the Pacific Northwest
Does solar power even work in the Pacific Northwest?
Absolutely. The Pacific Northwest’s long summer days were made for solar. Thanks to all that sunlight and utility net metering programs, we can build energy credits in the summer months and work off of them during our darker months.
Solar panels also operate more efficiently in our cooler summer weather, which means more power than hotter climates, not less. Solar energy systems keep on working on cloudy days too, collecting scattered light and focusing it into power.
Sure, we don’t produce as much solar power the US’s Southwestern States, but we still generate enough to make solar a financially and environmentally viable solution. In fact, our solar resource is better than Germany’s, which leads the world in solar energy installations.
How can I offset all my usage with solar energy?
First, isn’t it cool that a chart of our solar production looks like Mount Rainier? If you follow the story of this chart you can see why our net metering programs here in Washington are so valuable.
During our long sunny summers, your production is often much higher than what your energy usage might be. That means you’re spinning your meter backwards and generating credits with your utility. If your system matched to your consumption patterns, it’s possible that you can generate enough credits during the summer to offset all of your winter consumption.
Net metering allows our customers to become ‘100% Solar Powered’ even without batteries.