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Solar Plus Releases Strategies for 2018

Solar Map

Solar Plus has released strategies for increasing deployment in Washington State and Oregon. The strategies, building on goals set earlier in the year, focus on how to maximize the social, economic and technical benefits of solar.

Front and Centered joined energy advocates, utilities, solar installers, and government in forming the Solar Plus project in 2017, a Department of Energy funded forum to increase solar deployment.

The strategies were established by the forum after a year of working together in work groups, state forums, and two-state forums with Oregon. They will shape the second year work program. The strategies include:

  1. Informing and sharing policy discussions
  2. Coordinating and connecting on workforce development
  3. Planning and deploying community solar programs
  4. Increasing equity and education
  5. Defining and deploying projects that increase community and grid resiliency
  6. Developing a common understanding of solar valuation and net metering issues

Front and Centered focus will be on on issues identified by our communities during our 2017 solar listening sessions. The include identifing environmental justice communities to target solar deployment, educating these communities about the opportunities that exist to participate, channeling incentives and supporting member organizations in launching community, shared ownership solar projects, and tracking and advocating for solar policies that deliver targeted, equitable benefits.

You can read more about this strategies here. The strategies are intended to serve the goals established by the forum to increase access and benefits of solar to everyone, to target benefits to environmental justice communities, to grow the solar industry, and to increase the value proposition for solar.

More information is available on the Solar Plus website, including a list of of resources, among them, the Front and Centered listening session report on solar power, funded by this project. The Solar Plus project also included development of a dashboard for solar metrics,  featured in the image above, which has data on renewable energy deployment by zip code, but still needs work to address the equity goals established by the Forum, in part, due to lack of reporting and data collection process on issues like income, wealth or race and ethnicity for solar incentives.

The Solar Plus process began with the creation of a equity framework to guide goal setting and strategy decision making.