Student Research

Land Conversion to Solar Energy report cover image
May 8, 2023

This paper considers continuity and change in Virginia’s energy regulation atmosphere related to House Bill 206, describes the causes and consequences of insufficient EIAs and implementation lags, and summarizes existing evidence both on land-use changes for photovoltaic production and on feasible EIA mechanisms.

Utility-scale solar
August 25, 2022

Utility-scale solar facilities are an important component of electricity generation and decarbonization in the Commonwealth of Virginia, but few guiding documents are available to support localities’ approach to the decommissioning process. This report analyzes existing state and local laws, recommendations from state and federal agencies, and approaches in comparable markets to present an inventory of decommissioning best practices for Virginia localities hosting utility-scale solar facilities.

Solar panels with poppies in front
January 8, 2021

This report offers case study observations that could be informative in efforts to create a more predictable, efficient, and expedient permitting process for utility-scale solar facility construction in Virginia. From examining the 12 case studies, this report finds two major impediments to solar permitting.

Rooftop solar
November 30, 2020

We review existing soft costs of adopting distributed solar in the united states. Reducing these costs will play a key role in building a carbon-free economy.