GRID's Recent Policy Wins

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October 07, 2019
I march for environmental justice sign held up in front of the capitol building

On September 20th, four million people across the globe took to the streets to demand climate action. We joined the Climate Strike as a supporting organization and many of our staff joined local community events and demonstrations or worked through the day, continuing to make solar accessible to more communities. Renewable energy is a key part of the immediate action that is needed to address climate injustices. The work we do to help families living in underserved communities access renewable energy is dependent on state and local solar-friendly policy that is centered around energy equity.  Our policy team works hard to make sure renewable energy legislation prioritizes energy accessibility for everyone. Here are some of our recent policy wins: 

In September, U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth introduced the Low Income Solar Energy Act, federal legislation aimed to help more low-income Americans access solar’s benefits through expanded Low Income Housing Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funding and create solar workforce programming for groups underrepresented in today’s industry. GRID’s Chief Policy and Business Development Officer, Stan Greschner, said, “This legislation builds off of many successful state programs that expand access to clean energy through solar and ensures careers in the growing clean energy economy are accessible to all through workforce development.”

A GRID staff member poses in a GRID shirt with a sign "A  Strong rural america requires strong climate action."
GRID staff members in all our regions participated in local Climate Strike events
Last month, California approved the Disadvantaged Communities - Single-family Solar Homes (DAC-SASH) Program Handbook and Implementation Plan, submitted by GRID, clearing the way for the launch of this $120 million investment in solar access. DAC-SASH builds on California’s long-standing, successful clean energy programs serving disadvantaged communities and will provide $8.5 million in incentives annually through 2030 to reduce the cost of going solar for families impacted by high energy costs while integrating job training opportunities into every project, ensuring lasting community benefit.

The California Public Utilities Commission recently boosted incentives in the state’s battery storage equity budget and added a new Equity Resiliency Budget to incent storage adoption for medically vulnerable and low-income Californians most at risk to wildfires and preventive Public Safety Power Shutoff events. A years-long effort by GRID and our partners, this win opens up new opportunities for us to make solar and storage technologies accessible to California families living in disadvantaged communities and areas with high fire risk.

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