Wildfire smoke in California is hindering solar power’s effectiveness

The push for solar power is growing. At the same time, wildfires are becoming a bigger threat across the country, which is impacting the effectiveness of sun power.

A new study from the National Center for Atmospheric Research shows that in 2020, wildfire smoke cut solar power on average by 10-30 percent. On the worst days, it was as much as 50 percent.

NCAR Scientist and lead author of the study says this is something utilities operators must keep in mind moving forward.

“The key takeaway from this research is that wildfire smoke can have a substantial and negative impact on solar energy production in areas near major wildfires. This is something that utilities should keep in mind when wildfires occur,” said Timothy Juliano.