Solar energy production is rapidly expanding around the West Texas region. As a state, Texas ranks first in the nation in solar energy potential due to high levels of solar radiation. This type of radiation is perfectly suited to support large scale solar power plants. West Texas in particular, is uniquely suited to experience growth in solar energy production. West Texas has 75% more direct solar radiation than East Texas. Visit the State Energy Conservation Office’s website for more information.
Developers recognizing the region’s potential for solar energy are diversifying the energy landscape. The first phase of the Barilla Solar project adding around 18 megawatts of capacity concluded in 2014, and an additional 12 megawatts in Phase II brings the total installation to 30 megawatts. The project sits on 200 acres in Pecos County and is already making quite an impact. Additional large scale solar projects are planned for Andrews County and Knox County, while a utility scale project is in the works for the city of San Angelo.
During the hot West Texas summer, one megawatt-hour of solar energy is able to cool up to 100 homes for an hour. In less extreme temperatures, that one megawatt-hour can power even more. The recently completed CREZ updates make West Texas a prime location to generate and transmit the power produced to market. Visit our Wind Energy page for more information on the CREZ transmission project.
Resources on Solar Energy
State Energy Conservation Office - Solar
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- How to Choose a Solar Panel Installer – http://www.letsgosolar.com/
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- Complete Solar Systems – http://www.letsgosolar.com/
The are quizzes, how-to checklists, easy-to-follow explanations, and expert tips that would benefit you as you explore your interest in solar energy.