The SunShot Vision Study, a report by the US Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative, has taken a look at the potential solar technologies have, over the next several decades, to provide a large share of electricity demand in the US. Looking at a scenario where the cost of solar technologies decreases by 75% between 2010 and 2020 and focusing on PV and CSP, the study reports on the pathways, barriers and implications that the actual achievement of the SunShot Initiative price reduction targets would have on market penetration levels.
The SunShot study utilized two models, the SunShot program and a reference scenario, developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to look and compare the possible outcomes. Among other conclusions, the study found that reaching the level of price reductions that the SunShot Initiative is promoting could result in solar energy meeting 14% of US electricity needs by 2030 and 27% by 2050. The study did note that reaching these levels did harbor on a combined evolution and revolution of technological advances.
Furthermore in addition to the prediction that the SunShot scenario would produce less carbon dioxide emissions than the reference scenario, the study also found that the SunShot scenario could support 290,000 new solar jobs by 2030 and 390,000 by 2050.
The full report is available here, on the US DOE’s SunShot Initiative website.