Abstract: This thesis presents an indicator based assessment that seeks to determine how residential solar photovoltaic (PV) systems contributed to sustainability goals and how feasible emission reduction was through residential solar photovoltaic systems in the Las Vegas-Paradise Metropolitan Statistical Area. Southern Nevada is a rapidly growing southwestern US region that has high potential for renewable, non-combustible, energy technology, in specific, rooftop solar. The four LVPMSA cities released sustainability and/or sustainable development plans with goals directly, or indirectly, relating to solar energy. A triple bottom line framework, using ten energy-based indicators, helped to analyze how equitable, viable, and livable residential solar was in the LVPMSA to meet sustainability goals. Indicators and emission reduction calculators were also used to determine how much and how feasible emission reduction in the LVPMSA through residential solar. Data were provided through The Open PV Project (a voluntary cooperative solar website), the US Census Bureau, and the Clark County Department of Air Quality. In respect to the literature, the results reflect that rooftop solar in LVPMSA cities to meet sustainability goals is not equitable, and weakly viable and livable, based on measures from economic, environmental, and social indicators, but how equitable, viable, and livable each LVPMSA city varies. In order from greatest to least, Henderson, North Las Vegas, Las Vegas and then Boulder City best contribute to sustainability goals with rooftop solar. Rooftop solar also serves as a feasible means to reduce emissions on a smaller (residential) scale, but not on a larger city or county scale. Larger scale projects, versus smaller scale rooftop solar, should be considered as a stronger means to both significantly reduce emissions and contribute to sustainability goals.
Keywords: Assessment,Greenhouse gas reduction,Las Vegas,Renewable energy,Solar energy, Sustainability