Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Sustainable Pittsburgh & SolSmart Program Looking To Partner With Municipalities To Attract Solar Energy Investment

On January 27,
Sustainable Pittsburgh is teaming up with the Great Plains Institute and the Solsmart Program staff to bring technical expertise and recognition to local municipalities looking to improve their potential for attracting solar investment.

Solsmart, a program of The Solar Foundation and the International City/County Management Association (ICMA), is a voluntary recognition program for municipalities that uses objective criteria to assess and guide local governments seeking to streamline the process of reviewing and approving solar photovoltaic energy systems. 

Sustainable Pittsburgh is looking first to communities who’ve previously earned recognition through the Sustainable Pennsylvania Community Certification Program, a program managed in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Municipal League. 

Municipalities who are selected to participate in this effort will receive technical assistance from local and national solar experts and support from local graduate students. 

A team of graduate students, assisted by Sustainable Pittsburgh staff, will help community leaders assess which criteria in the Solsmart program the municipality is currently eligible for and work with them to develop a workplan to achieve maximum potential. 

The municipality will also have access to Pennsylvania specific training and resources. 

Installing solar voltaic energy to power a home or business is an excellent way to save money, lower carbon pollution, and improve regional air quality. 

But one of the largest barriers to installing solar energy is not the cost of the system itself, but the soft cost of obtaining permits, waiting for reviews, and navigating the inconsistent and sometimes dated regulations of local government. 

The solar landscape has changed dramatically over the past 15 years and we are working with national partners to assist local governments in updating and streamlining their processes.

In addition, Sustainable Pittsburgh and PML will be adding the Solsmart program as criteria to the Sustainable Pennsylvania program.  

This means that communities who earn the Solsmart designation will also benefit from a higher score in the Sustainable PA program.

If your municipality is interested in participating, please contact Jim Price by sending an email to:

For more information on programs, initiatives and upcoming events, visit the Sustainable Pittsburgh website.  Click Here to sign up for regular updates. Like them on Facebook, Follow them on TwitterClick Here to support their work.

To learn more about green innovation in the Pittsburgh Region, visit the Pittsburgh Green Story website.


-- StateImpactPA: Solar Panels From A Wastewater Authority? In Centre County, Renewable Energy Has An Unlikely Booster

-- Rachel McDevitt: In PA, Solar Set To Test How Local Governments Deal With New Kind Of Energy Infrastructure [Video]  

-- WHYY: Share Food Program In Philadelphia Receives Grant To Go Solar

-- Daily Voice: Bucks County Audubon Society Debuts New Solar Panels

-- WSun Editorial: Here Comes The Sun, Field Of Solar Panels Planned In Lycoming County

Allegheny County Community College To Install Cost-Saving Solar Panels

Related Article:

-- PA Solar Center Solicits Proposals To Help Businesses Transition To Solar Energy: Feb. 10  & 17 Webinars Set

[Posted: January 27, 2021]  PA Environment Digest

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