Erica L. Welsh

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Despite the lack of a renewable energy mandate or a statewide carbon-cutting goal, Georgia’s renewable energy development, particularly utility-scale solar installations, is expected to increase exponentially. In the rush to join this renewable energy development surge, utilities, solar developers, and local governments must prudently consider how to manage this growth wisely and prevent avoidable costs in preparing for the inevitable decommissioning of these solar installations. Although Georgia is one of the nation’s leading states for solar power with its abundant land and sunshine, it lacks statewide policies addressing decommissioning concerns. A statewide decommissioning policy that requires some form of decommissioning plan and financial assurance can protect developers from unanticipated litigation that could detrimentally affect solar development. This Note examines the potential challenges utilities, developers, and local governments may face at the decommissioning stage and proposes a statewide decommissioning policy that would protect Georgia’s economy and communities with a predictable regulatory environment.

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