In 2017, solar panel prices were expected to drop by around $2.50 per watt for residential and small commercial solar, down from $3.40 to $5.60 per watt.
That’s a $200 drop.
Solar panel prices fell by about $2 billion for the year as a whole.
The drop in solar panel costs could be offset by higher utility bills as consumers and businesses reduce their reliance on fossil fuels.
Some analysts have speculated that a number of factors could be driving the price drop.
For example, the drop in wind power could result in solar power prices falling, which would be offset with higher utility rates, or solar installations could be taking a hit due to weather.
In 2019, a solar panel installed at the California National Guard base near El Dorado Hills could cost $1,600 per watt, down by nearly a third.
Another factor driving the solar panel price drop could be the impact of new regulations that will come into effect this summer.
These regulations will make it more difficult for people to install solar panels on their homes or businesses.
At least three states have announced they will phase out the use of solar panels in some form, including Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas.
This move is expected to save utilities $4.5 billion over the next five years, according to a recent report from the American Solar Energy Association.