The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) issued the 2012 California Solar Initiative (CSI) yearly program assessment to the Legislature earlier this month.

The CSI Program has a $2.4 billion budget and a goal of 1,940 megawatts of solar capacity by the end of 2016. According to the report, the state is now more than halfway there, with over one gigawatt of installed customer-generated solar capacity. California is the first state to surpass the one-gigawatt mark.

The report also notes that:

  • Residential solar system costs have decreased by 28 percent since 2007.
  • CSI projects in low-income areas have increased by 364 percent since 2007.
  • CSI projects in middle-income markets (areas with median incomes between $50,000 and $100,000) have increased by 445 percent since 2007, and comprise the majority of applications received in 2011
  • In 2011, the CSI Program installed a record 261 megawatts, with another 97 megawatts installed so far in 2012.
  • And on a topic that's becoming a more important subject at Greentech Media, the CSI-solar water heating program has received 704 applications for $4.87 million in rebates in its two years of operation.


The cumulative amount of solar installed in the U.S. at the end of Q1 2012 was 4.943 gigawatts, according to GTM Research. To bring that into better perspective, German solar generation reached 22,000 megawatts in late May this year. That's about half of Germany's peak afternoon load, depending on the time year. California set its own record for solar production on June 8 with 849 megawatts of solar generation

The full CPUC report can be found here (PDF).


Total CSI budget is $2.4 billion.


72 percent of residential CSI solar installs in the first half of 2012 were third-party financed