In a big move last year, the city of Dalton, in northern Georgia, near the Tennessee line, added a new industry to its manufacturing mix: the largest solar panel assembly plant in the Western hemisphere, a $150 million investment.

This is just one sign that in Georgia, solar is booming. And it’s not for the reasons you might expect. There are powerful market forces at work.

The U.S. is the second-largest market for solar in the world, after China. Ever cheaper and better solar technology, available land and lots of sunshine are driving demand for massive, utility-scale solar projects across the American Southeast.

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