Welcome to this month’s GRID Alternatives Mid-Atlantic Policy Roundup! Each month this newsletter highlights the role of policy advocacy in making renewable energy equitable in the Mid-Atlantic and across the nation.
While we keep our fingers crossed that Congress and the White House can fix the debt ceiling problem without cutting Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) programs or imposing other cuts that would hurt our communities, we've been busy advocating for strong IRA implementation. Federal agencies have been issuing more detailed frameworks for key programs like the Solar for All competition, a $7 billion investment within EPA's Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF) in policies and programs for equitable access to solar, storage, and enabling upgrades. In many cases, we are pleased to report that agencies have aligned with GRID's policy recommendations, based on our experience working with communities to ensure the benefits of renewable energy savings and jobs reach those who otherwise face barriers. We are still awaiting further guidance on tax incentives for equitable clean energy.
District of Columbia
GRID Mid-Atlantic provided testimony before the D.C. Council in support of the Healthy Homes Act, a bill to position the District to secure and expand on federal funding for residential electrification including healthier induction stoves and heat pumps. These technologies pair well with solar, saving local residents even more on their energy bills and providing even broader career opportunities. We also discussed our implementation of the Solar Works DC solar installation and job training program of the Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) and Department of Employment Services (DOES) with other state and federal decision makers at a recent Federal-State Summit hosted by the Clean Energy States Alliance. Our local successes, and even our challenges, generate crucial knowledge to accelerate economic and environmental justice through renewable energy around the country.
We applaud Governor Moore's signing of legislation passed by the Maryland General Assembly this year, HB908, to make the state's community solar program permanent, while also strengthening it and ensuring that low- and moderate-income Marylanders will receive priority access to the savings and other benefits from community solar subscriptions. GRID Mid-Atlantic and our allies are already gearing up for an even more ambitious 2024 legislative session. Meanwhile, and similar to other jurisdictions, GRID Mid-Atlantic is engaging with decisionmakers at the Public Service Commission and other state agencies around its GGRF Solar for All funding application planning and other Inflation Reduction Act implementation opportunities.
GRID Mid-Atlantic will be preparing comments on Virginia's plans to seek funding under the federal Solar for All program mentioned above. Virginia residents can also offer comments here through June 8. Along with other advocates, we also hope that Virginia can join Maryland and DC in expanding solar access.