Carson Harkrader: Reps kept REPS alive

May 5, 2013 

Reps kept REPS alive

I grew up in North Carolina, left and spent 10 years working in the energy industry elsewhere, and recently returned to work in solar energy.

I’d like to congratulate the N.C. House committee that rejected House Bill 298, which sought to repeal North Carolina’s renewable energy portfolio standard (REPS). This strong bi-partisan decision will help keep us a national leader in the growing clean energy industry.

The REPS, along with state tax credits, have helped a home-grown solar industry spring up and start to come of age here in North Carolina. Due to the way our incentives are structured, our solar industry is mostly made up of companies that are locally owned and headquartered here. Out of every $2.50 spent to build a solar farm, approximately $0.70 is for solar panels. The rest goes to rent payments to local farmers, labor that is generally all local, racking and electrical systems and other construction and financing. As our industry has grown, companies that supply racking systems, specialty construction services and financial support have sprung up, driving even more local investment.

We are working hard to continue to drive costs down and provide clean, affordable energy for North Carolina.

Carson Harkrader

Carolina Solar Energy

Durham

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