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Uncle Sam Gets Behind New Solar Initiatives

April 29, 2024
On Earth Day 2024, the Biden-Harris Administration announced new efforts to increase clean energy usage nationwide.

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As governments, organizations and individuals seek out new ways to preserve the environment, the U.S. government has taken another step to help boost the use of solar energy nationwide. On Earth Day 2024 (April 22nd), the Biden Administration announced $7 billion in federal solar power grants. Those grants will be awarded to residential solar projects that serve more than 900,000 households located in low- and middle-income communities.

The White House says the new grants will help support households that are overburdened by a cumulative $350 million in electricity costs annually (approximately $400 per household). And because solar is a clean energy source, the funding will also help avoid “more than 30 million metric tons of carbon pollution over the next 25 years.

Where Will the Money Go?
The White House says selectees will provide funds to states, territories, tribes, municipalities and nonprofits across the country to develop long-lasting solar programs that enable low-income and disadvantaged communities to deploy and benefit from distributed residential solar. 

“In total, solar projects funded by this program will create nearly 200,000 jobs,” it says. “The program also advances the president’s Justice40 Initiative, which set a goal that 40% of the overall benefits of certain federal climate, clean energy, affordable and sustainable housing, and other investments flow to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized by underinvestment and overburdened by pollution.”

According to  AP, the new awards came from the Solar for All program, part of the $27 billion “green bank” created as part of a sweeping climate law passed in 2022. “The bank is intended to reduce climate and air pollution and send money to neighborhoods most in need, especially disadvantaged and low-income communities disproportionately affected by climate change,” the publication reports. 

Among those receiving grants are state projects to provide solar-equipped roofs for homes, college residences and residential-serving community solar projects in West Virginia, a non-profit operating Mississippi solar lease program and solar workforce training initiatives in South Carolina, AP adds.

Deploying More Clean Energy 

U.S. Senator Tom Carper, chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, applauded the announcement. “Every American should experience the benefits of our clean energy future, no matter their zip code or income,” Carper announced on the EPW website

“The Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund is delivering $7 billion for residential and community solar projects in communities with the greatest need across our nation,” he added. “I applaud the Biden Administration for deploying clean energy to over 900,000 households and lowering energy costs, all while creating good-paying jobs. That’s what I call a win-win-win!”

Other Initiatives Underway
During “Earth Week,” the Biden-Harris Administration announced additional actions like helping ensure clean water for all communities; accelerating America’s clean transportation future; steps to cut pollution from the power sector while strengthening America’s electricity grid; and providing cleaner air and healthier schools for all children.

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About the Author

Bridget McCrea | Contributing Writer | Supply Chain Connect

Bridget McCrea is a freelance writer who covers business and technology for various publications.