The Solar Foundation is advancing solar energy use through strategic research and education that transforms markets. SolSmart provides recognition and no-cost technical assistance to help cities and counties encourage solar energy development locally. CivicPACE is working to support solar energy deployment by bringing property assessed clean energy (PACE) financing to tax-exempt organizations, such as nonprofits, affordable housing, faith-based institutions, and schools. Other programs and initiatives include:
Whole Foods Market — Making the Case for Rapid Solar Rollouts
A new analysis by the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) and The Solar Foundation outlines a standardized approach that Whole Foods Market is using to rapidly expand solar rooftop installations, which could be a model for other retailers. The report outlines how Whole Foods will meet its plan to retrofit approximately 100 facilities with rooftop solar by 2017.
Solar + Storage
As energy storage systems are added to the electricity grid at an accelerating pace, it is imperative that decision makers have a general understanding of the economic impacts. To this end, The Solar Foundation produced this discussion paper on the current labor efficiencies experienced by the U.S. solar industry and how such measures may provide insight about solar related employment in the energy storage industry. While we consider the storage results to be preliminary, this discussion paper was developed using data collected through The Solar Foundation’s National Solar Jobs Census 2015, as well as information collected through interviews of solar and energy storage experts from across the country.
Clean Power Plan Compliance Tools
The Solar Foundation commissioned 5 Lakes Energy to develop a State Tool for Electricity Emissions Reduction (STEER) model for the states of Georgia and North Carolina. The STEER model is created specifically for stakeholders to use in the planning process for the Clean Power Plan, designed to meet a balance in ease of use for the user while maintaining a high level of analytical rigor.
STEER employs high-resolution data such as the generator-level data, hourly data for renewable resources, and energy efficiency options as represented in energy efficiency potential studies. Using this data, the STEER model pinpoints specific projects to invest in for least-cost carbon mitigation. The results also include rate impacts that provide insights into the financial impacts of the Clean Power Plan. The STEER model incorporates a unique feature in its ability to reflect the interactive effects between the mitigation projects.
The Solar Foundation acknowledges the Advanced Energy Economy Institute (AEEI) and its team in creating the template model that is utilized in the creation of the state-specific versions of the STEER model.
For more information on these models, please email Pari Kasotia at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In July 2014, The Solar Foundation made a Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to partner with Reverend Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow PUSH Coalition to devise and implement a multi-phased outreach and engagement initiative designed to accelerate solar energy adoption among the faith community. Through this commitment, The Solar Foundation and the RainbowPUSH Coalition are offering partners tailored, educational solar materials, a connection to other solar industry members, the opportunity for strong national exposure and media events, as well as the opportunity to develop new solar markets that can make a significant impact in the lives of Americans.