Since taking office last year, Maine Governor Janet Mills has worked aggressively to pivot the state's renewables market, with help from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle.
Last June, the Northeastern state passed a number of bills centered on renewables and climate change. At the time, Mills, a Democrat — and one of numerous recently elected state executives who campaigned on pro-renewables platforms — said the state was “ushering in a new era of clean energy and climate leadership.”
Up to now, Maine’s solar industry has cobbled together only about 60 megawatts of installations, putting it in the bottom 10 among states, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association. In the next five years, however, Maine is expected to add 849 megawatts.
With utility interconnection queues growing, local developers and a rush of newcomers are grappling with the market's swift changes — and determining how to get it all done.