Florida is a key state in unlocking the power of clean energy solutions for the Southeastern US; it has the third-highest solar generating capacity potential in the country, but is not even in the top ten in production. In fact, New Jersey (despite being a smaller, less-sunny state) installed more solar capacity just last year than Florida has in its history.
Unfortunately, Florida is hampered by poor solar energy policies. It is one of only four states with laws prohibiting citizens from purchasing electricity from third-party suppliers that are not utilities. The Tea Party and environmental activists are working together to try to change this law through a ballot initiative next year. Working together, these groups can truly make Florida the Sunshine State once again.
If Florida embraces solar power, the state can create jobs and supply renewable, clean energy to over half a million homes by 2020. Nationwide employment in the solar sector grew by 120 percent between 2010 and 2014. Sixteen percent of those jobs are held by Latinos.