US community solar industry commits to DOE’s goal of 20 GW by 2025

The Coalition for Community Solar Access (CCSA) Tuesday announced a commitment to develop 20 GW of community solar power by 2025. Representing the U.S. community’s solar industry at the Department of Energy’s National Community Solar Partnership Summit, the CCSA aligns development plans with the DOE’s intent to provide enough solar energy for the community to support 5 power millions of American homes.

“Today, more than 80 local solar energy suppliers from across the country announced a commitment to build more than 20 GW of community solar power by 2025. The industry is poised to help DOE meet its ambitious solar energy goals for the community,” said Jeff Cramer, CCSA president and CEO. “With the combination of DOE’s NCSP initiatives and the approval of other critical actions by state and federal policymakers, the industry can achieve this goal and meet pent-up demand, save American consumers and businesses money, create local jobs, increase the resilience of improve the grid and protect the environment and community health.”

The community solar industry experienced a record year of growth in 2020. Early construction and development studies anticipate further expansion of the industry pending policy approval. In addition to its commitment, CCSA is urging policy makers to remove barriers and drive implementation, in parallel with the industry’s work to improve and develop community solar products for rapid expansion. CCSA has recommended a series of seven actions to achieve the 20 GW target by 2025:

  • Implement federal funding and tax incentives for community solar projects by passing the Build Back Better Act and the Community Solar Consumer Choice Act.
  • Mobilize 10 new states to establish third-party solar programs for a total of 31 states and the District of Columbia by 2025.
  • Expand the scope of existing programs to meet pent-up customer demand and achieve the cheapest and most resilient power grid.
  • Improving technical and cost barriers to interconnection through integrated grid planning, appropriate incentives and proactive policies.
  • Build and train a skilled local workforce to fill the thousands of new family support jobs that will be created across the country to build and operate the new projects.
  • Raise the standard of savings on accounts for low to middle income customers and build roads that increase awareness of and participation in community solar projects.
  • Continue to develop community solar products to ensure customers can easily and easily participate, save money and encourage the development of more solar energy in their community.

More than 75% of U.S. households do not have access to solar energy because they either do not have their own homes or their rooftops are unable to host a solar system. Through community solar, people can connect to a shared local solar facility that gives subscribers equal access to the economic and environmental benefits of solar power generation through utility bills.

Research shows that rapid acceleration of distributed energy sources such as community solar will be necessary to meet US climate and clean energy goals at the lowest cost, including analysis commissioned by CCSA and the DOE’s own Solar Futures study.

“The Department of Energy’s efforts to catalyze public awareness and resource availability will play a key role in achieving this goal for US solar growth,” Cramer said. “We know that customers want local solar and we are committed to doing our part to accelerate the growth of solar in the community so we can build a clean, cost-effective power grid that works for all Americans.”

News item from Coalition for Community Solar Access

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