On Tuesday, July 7th, the White House announced a new initiative designed to make solar electricity and solar industry jobs more accessible to low income households. The official White House Press Release can be found HERE.
The proposed initiative is designed to deploy clean, renewable energy that will reduce carbon emissions while creating jobs. Some of the highlights of the announcement include the following:
- Establishing a National Community Solar Partnership that will provide opportunities for the 50% of households and businesses that lack the roof space or ownership necessary for solar energy.
- Providing technical assistance to make solar installation on Affordable Housing easier.
- Developing a Toolkit to increase the ability of states to use federal funding to deploy solar on affordable housing.
- Funding AmeriCorp and the Solar Ready Vets Program to train workers for solar industry jobs and to deploy solar in impoverished areas.
Earlier this year, President Obama announced a goal to train 75,000 new workers to enter the solar industry by 2020. In line with this goal, President Obama issued an executive action to install 300 MW of new solar capacity on federally subsidized housing by 2020, expanding the Administration’s previous goals to also include community and shared solar installations.
In addition to the federal goals, some states (including MA, CA, HI, VT, WA, and DC), cities, and leaders in the private sector have also committed to investing more than $520 million to advance community solar or scale up solar and energy efficiency in low- and moderate- income communities.