The Obama administration is issuing a slew of executive orders to boost the solar panel industry, this time by pushing for more solar panels to be used at federally subsidized housing developments.
The White House announced a goal of getting 300 megawatts installed at federally subsidized housing all while providing technical and financial assistance to subsidized housing operators looking to go green. The administration also says it’s leveraged $520 million in “independent commitments from philanthropic and impact investors, states, and cities” to boost solar energy among the low income community.
“The executive actions and private sector commitments that we are announcing today will help continue to scale up solar for all Americans, including those who are renters, lack the startup capital to invest in solar, or do not have adequate information on how to transition to solar energy,” the White House said in a statement.
The move to push solar panel on federally-subsidized housing comes less than one month after Obama unveiled “executive actions” to “make information about energy and climate programs … accessible and more understandable to the public, including to mission-driven investors.” Obama also ordered the IRS to issue guidance on how groups could invest in green energy.
Obama’s latest orders also call for the creation of a “National Community Solar Partnership” to increase solar power access to low-income families that rent their homes or apartments and may not have enough rooftop space for a solar panel array. So-called “solar gardens” are a new way to finance solar panels across the country, but one that could increase costs and bring dubious benefits.
For example, Denver recently contracted with a solar company to have 16 city-operated buildings powered by solar energy from a community solar project. City officials heralded the deal as helping green up Denver, but there’s one caveat — there’s no guarantee solar power will actually come to your home or building.