Value of Solar (VOC)
Value of Solar (VOC) Definition:
A methodology that takes a uniform approach to establish the true value of the electricity produced by the distributed energy systems. Currently, the solar energy that is generated from photovoltaic systems varies in price depending on state and utility.
Breaking Down Value of Solar (VOC):
Due to the unique nature of solar energy production compared to conventional methods of energy production, there is currently not a market-wide accepted value of electricity produced from solar. The Value of Solar (VOC) is a methodology that takes the unique factors of solar energy production into consideration to determine an acceptable market value that benefits both residents and utilities.
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The Unique Nature of Photovoltaic Systems
- Produce most electricity during peak demand
- Produce power at the location of use
- No continuous fuel purchasing requirement
- Energy independence from foreign importing of fuel
- 0 emission energy production
These distinct characteristics of solar energy allow for a high degree of variability on how it is valued across markets. VOC studies begin to assess these traits to develop better planning for future energy investments that maximize benefits to society. There are a number of implementations from VOC studies that have a direct impact on the future of how solar energy is valued.
Implementations of Value of Solar
- Improving utility resource planning
- Informing solar incentive programs
- Establishing an analytical foundation for net metering rates
- Assist in creating a foundation for new rate designs
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