Gov. Sandoval inks regulations for Nevada solar revival

One key bill signed by Gov. Sandoval is Senate Bill 145, which establishes the Solar Energy Systems Incentive Program that will encourage the installation of energy storage systems. This measure also creates a state policy to expand and accelerate the use of electric vehicles (EVs) and support the EV infrastructure which falls in line with the Governor’s goal to have all of Nevada’s highways, no matter how remote, accessible to all EV drivers and ensure completion of the first complete EV highway system in the nation.

Among other provisions of SB145, it requires the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) beginning on January 1 and ending in December 2023, to authorize the payment of incentives of up to $2 million per year for the installation of solar energy systems and distributed generation systems at locations that benefit low-income customers.

The law also now requires that the Nevada Department of Transportation annually evaluate and publish a report analyzing the need for additional publicly available  hydrogen-fueling stations over the next three years. Similarly, the bill appropriates $2 million to provide incentives for the construction of publicly available hydrogen-fueling stations.

Other features of the law include the creation of a Legislative Committee on Energy, and directs it to conduct an interim study analyzing the development of energy, viability, expansion and implementation of energy efficiency programs.

And the bill also directs the new committee to analyze the viability of establishing green banks and similar entities to help finance the use and harnessing of clean energy projects in this State, for commercial and residential properties.

The governor also signed Senate Bill 204, which was recommended by the Governor’s New Energy Industry Task Force and requires the PUC to determine if it is in the public interest for utilities to purchase energy storage. The act becomes effective on July 1, 2017 and the PUC must make its determination by October 1, 2018.