On Friday, June 26, the House of Representatives passed the American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES – HR 2454) by a vote of 219 to 212 (see how your Congress Member voted here). This is the first time that climate change legislation has passed either house of Congress – so this is BIG news.
Solar-Related Provisions in the bill:
(to learn more about each of the provisions click here to see the Solar Energy Industries Association’s summary of the bill):
· National Renewable Energy Standard (RES) of 20 percent by 2020 (however, with the various exemptions this will likely lead to 11.5% renewable by 2020).
· Sets aside a portion of the carbon allowances for states to use to fund renewable energy and energy efficiency projects (9.5 percent of carbon allowances).
· Provisions to expedite the overhaul of our transmission system to make room for new renewable energy (allows for regional transmission grid planning and federal siting authority)
· Allows the federal government to fund solar installations on public buildings through entering into a 20-year Power Purchase Authority (PPAs).
· Establishes a “Green Bank” (aka the Clean Energy Deployment Administration) to provide seed money to domestic companies developing cutting-edge renewable technologies including solar.