May 23 (Reuters) - New York state's power grid met about 20% of its electricity demand with energy from the sun for one hour last week, marking the highest ever output from solar generation, the grid operator said on Tuesday.
A record-setting 3,330 megawatts (MW) of solar power was produced during the noon hour on May 18, the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) said.
That amount of power could provide electricity to between 2.7 million and 3.3 million homes, with the peak load on May 18 logging at 16,166 MW, the NYISO said.
Behind-the-meter solar resources accounted for 3,200 MW of the power generated, while front-of-the-meter resources made up 130 MW, the NYISO added.
"New York is one of the most robust solar markets in the U.S. with programs such as NY-Sun driving significant growth across the state," said Doreen Harris, president and CEO of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority.
The record moved the state closer to meeting its Climate Act mandates, Harris added. The act requires all power generation to come from clean sources by 2040, including 70% from renewable energy by 2030.
Last month, Justin Driscoll, CEO of New York Power Authority, the nation's largest state-owned electric utility, said switching to clean energy from natural gas-fired electricity is the New York power industry's top challenge this year.
Reporting by Deep Vakil in Bengaluru
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