US Education Sector Solar Could Provide $4 Billion In Annual Benefits

Educational institutions, including k-12 and higher education public and private institutions across the US, consume 11 percent of total US building electricity and contribute nearly 4 percent of US carbon dioxide emissions. The first analysis of the potential for solar PV in education institutions and the associated avoided costs, including health, environment and emissions reductions, was published in a 2019 Environmental Research Letter under the Creative Commons by researchers at Carnegie Mellon and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Findings are that rooftop solar PV could meet 75 percent of these buildings electric consumption and reduce the education sector’s carbon footprint by 28 percent.  “Overall, the provision of electricity services from rooftop solar PV on educational institutions is estimated to create annualized HE&CC [health, environment & climate change] benefits on the order of $4 billion per year. Midwestern states like Wisconsin and Ohio have the highest aggregated social net-benefits, under current policies and grid generation portfolios.”