New Poll: Tennesseans Want Increased Access to Solar

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Eighty-one percent of Tennessee voters support solar energy in the Volunteer State, and even more want it installed on their own homes.

The polling data was released Monday from the conservative polling firm, North Star Opinion Research. The survey was conducted among voters from a variety of ages, races, genders and geographic locations.

Brian Bickel, who sits on the board of the Tennessee Solar Industries Association, says the results confirm what the industry is seeing.

"I'm not surprised by the support for solar at all," he says. "I think, in this day and age most people want to see more of it. They recognize the value of clean and renewable energy. I think they expect their utility to support them in their efforts to generate clean power on site."

Problems with Solar Power in Tennessee:

Solar energy is a great resource for power, but not necessarily the best in Rutherford County. Amy Byers with Murfreesboro Electric explains...



Right now you can lease solar equipment with no up-front costs. However, no savings would be realized in places like Murfreesboro.

For example, the monthly price of the lease over a 20 year period would actually cost about $94 per month to utilize solar energy on top of WGNS Radio, a 2,000 square foot roof. In other words, WGNS would spend an additional $22,560 to lease solar equipment over a 20 year period. So it would not save the studios any money monthly, but cost WGNS money to capture solar energy.

But, that all changes if you lived in somewhere like Prescott, Arizona where the sun is always brighter. In Arizona, if you had a 1600 square foot home you could actually save around $2 per month. That of course equals a savings of $6,000 over a 20 year period, according to Google Project Sunroof.

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