The solar industry kicked off Solar Power International 2016- North America’s largest solar event last Septemeber 12-25 with thousands of solar professionals gathering in Las Vegas, Nevada for a full slate of workshops, educational opportunities and new technology exhibitions. 15,000 delegates from 75 countries were in attendance which included solar energy advocate, Gladys Vergara of Baguio City. The industry marked the official start of SPI with a dynamic welcome by Senator Harry Reid of Nevada who addressed the delegates via interactive video. In his speech, he expressed his admiration for the growth of the solar industry worldwide and the passage of the Investment Tax Credit for renewables. Investment Tax Credit refers to the amount that companies engaged in the solar industry are allowed by law to deduct from their taxes, reflecting an amount they reinvest in themselves.
A high level discussion on the solar energy industry followed. Jeffrey Ball, scholar in residence at Stanford University’s Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy and finance, moderated the conversation that featured David Crane, Senior Operating Executive, Pegasus Capital Advisers, Nat Kreamer, President and CEO, Spruce Finance Inc.; and Steve Malnight, Senior Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, Pacific Gas and Electric Company. The high level industry conversation detailed how companies should lead the charge by thinking holistically about the role solar plays in the future of the energy industry “What’s next?” was the questioned posed during the convention, now that solar, due to unprecedented growth is considered mainstream.
The tagline for SPI 2016 says it all: Innovation and collaboration at its core. Moving forward and growing together are the core of Solar Power International 2016. From informative sessions to networking events, it is apparent that Solar power International is indeed the fastest growing solar show in North America and poised to becoming the largest worldwide.