Introducing the New Shared Renewables HQ
Vote Solar has long adhered to the principle that the strongest path forward on solar is one that enables broad, diverse participation. Which is why we’re so darn excited about the promise of community shared renewables. So excited, we’ve dedicated an entire website to it. Check out our shiny new Shared Renewables HQ site for tracking state policy progress and best practices.
Shared solar is a concept that’s time has come. Thanks to increasing cost-competitiveness, the rooftop solar market is growing by leaps and bounds and delivering real benefits to communities nationwide—but the fact remains that a majority of American energy consumers, including families and businesses that rent, can’t go solar through the traditional panels-on-your-roof model. Low-income consumers face many of these physical barriers plus the additional challenge of lacking access to financing. Yet many of these same families have the most to gain from directly participating in and saving from clean energy.
A well-designed shared renewables program promises to break down those barriers and throw open the doors on solar participation. Whether or not they own a suitable rooftop themselves, New Yorkers would be able to subscribe to a local solar energy project and get credit on their utility bills for their portion of the clean power produced. That’s powerful.
We see strong interest in the concept from policymakers, industry and advocacy groups who want to help more consumers directly participate in and benefit from our growing solar economy. Over the past several years shared solar has quickly grown from outlier to mainstream movement. We’ve seen voluntary utility programs emerge in non-traditional solar markets like Michigan and Washington, we’ve seen larger statewide programs in places like Minnesota and Massachusetts reach impressive numbers of new solar consumers, and we see an increasing number of states considering programs of their own. New York is one state where we’re actively working with a coalition of diverse stakeholders to advance a new statewide shared renewables program.
Our revamped Shared Renewables HQ site is intended to help these stakeholders advance policies in their own states by:
- Evangelizing the shared solar promise and demonstrate momentum across the country to inspire state-by-state progress
- Establishing a common vocabulary and understanding of shared solar principles so that the advocacy community and policymakers are working together efficiently and effectively to advance shared solar
- Providing guidance on best practices so that states, stakeholders and utility leaders can easily learn from the experience of others and design shared solar policies that work
We hope you’ll use and share this resource to keep states moving forward on shared renewables. You can start with a simple tweet!