Home to two of the largest utility-scale solar farms and the largest deployment of residential solar panels in the country, California named as first state to cover 5 percent of energy needs through solar.

In 2013, California's solar output was a mere 1.9 percent of it's overall power needs, but major deployments and installations throughout 2014 allowed it to increase that number by more than 3 percent, generating 9.9 million megawatt hours. These numbers put the state well on its way to achieving its goal of moving one-third of its power generation to renewable, clean resources by 2020.

According to Fortune, this is particularly important in a year when California saw it's hydroelectric power generation fall nearly 46 percent when compared to the five-year average due to historic drought conditions.

Of course, California wasn't the only state to show impressive growth in state-wide power generation from solar energy panels, with Nevada and Arizona both achieving 2.8 percent and New Jersey topping 1 percent for the first time.

Continued growth of solar isn't just part of utility-scale projects, however, and homeowners contribute significantly to the potential for solar power to eventually replace nonrenewable resources. For residents in California, this doesn't just mean lower utility bills, but also a redistribution of energy toward resources that help promote a cleaner environment, reducing pollution in the areas we live in.

For any homeowner considering installing photovoltaic solar panels, contact SolarMax Technology.

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