Nevada: High energy prices spark interest in renewables

It said that the falling cost of renewable energy generation, coupled with the rising costs of conventional energy sources, is also contributing to the progression of the state’s renewable resources.

One such development is the investment in a 250-mile transmission line that will connect NV Energy in Reno and Las Vegas, announced back in January. The transmission line, according to the Nevada Commission on Economic Development, will allow the companies to add new renewable resources to their portfolio.

"Those in the renewable energy industry are showing continued interest in our state due to the plethora of opportunities that exist here for them," the Commission’s executive director Mike Skaggs said. "Bringing solar power companies to the state will also create jobs, not only in the development and maintenance of the plants, but also in the manufacturing areas that will support the renewable energy industry."

He continued: "Because we’re rich in energy resources, such as geothermal, solar, wind and biomass, renewable energy is a natural fit for Nevada. Our state has a unique opportunity to reduce energy costs and grow its economy while achieving energy independence."

Nevada possesses abundant renewable resources that can accommodate the development of new technologies. Recently, the Geothermal Energy Association ranked Reno as one of the leading geothermal cities in the world. The great development potential positions Nevada as one of the top states for pursuing alternative energy.

The State of Nevada has taken a leadership role in the nation’s effort to reduce reliance on fossil fuels and foreign oil by becoming one of the first states in the nation to adopt a renewable portfolio standard (RPS). To help facilitate the renewable projects required by the RPS, the 2009 legislature renewed and improved its financial incentive program for renewable energy generators. Projects are eligible for significant sales and payroll tax abatements. In addition, they are eligible for 55 percent property tax abatements for 20 years.