Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Sen. Scavello Introduces Bill Authorizing Community Solar Projects; $2 Billion Worth Of Projects Waiting For It To Pass

Sen. Mario Scavello (R-Monroe) has re-introduced legislation-- Senate Bill 472-- to authorize community solar projects which allow neighbors, businesses, farms, and other community members to directly participate in and receive the benefits from a solar project connected to their local electric distribution company’s grid.

It is estimated that $2 billion of investment is waiting for the passage of bipartisan legislation establishing a community solar energy program that could also help save family farms, all at no cost to taxpayers.  Read more here.

The bill was Senate Bill 705 last session.

“Under current law, individuals who are renters, live in an apartment building, or lack roof access, are unable to participate in Pennsylvania’s growing solar economy,” said Sen. Scavello.  “This legislation removes an existing policy barrier that allows individuals to participate in a community solar project if they choose to do so.

“Participants can subscribe to a portion of an offsite solar project and receive credit on their electricity bill for the power produced, just as if the panels were on their roof,” explained Sen. Scavello.  “This program extends to all Pennsylvania residents and businesses the ability to acquire solar energy from a specific community solar project. It also gives citizens and businesses the choice to participate. There is no mandate for participation or request for state funding.

“Community solar projects can be developed by private owners, municipalities and institutions, stimulating the development of true community partnerships,” said Sen. Scavello.

“Community solar has been allowed in 18 other states and the District of Columbia since 2010.”

The bill was referred to the Senate Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure Committee.


This legislation was one of two bills introduced last session to promote the growth of solar energy in Pennsylvania, but in different ways.

The other bill--  Senate Bill 705 (Scavello-R-Monroe) and its companion House Bill 531 (Kaufer-R-Luzerne) from last session-- have been supported by the Pennsylvania Conservative Energy Forum, the Coalition for Community Solar Access, Community Energy and other groups.  Read more here.

House Bill 1161 (Mizgorski-R-Allegheny), the former House Bill 1970 from last session, has been supported by Duquesne Light, the Energy Association of PA and the Edison Electric Institute, traditional electric distribution/ generation groups. Read more here.

House Bill 1161 will be the subject of a House Consumer Affairs Committee meeting April 19.  Read more here.


Ceres: 310 Businesses And Investors Representing Over $3 Trillion In Annual Revenue Urge Biden Administration To Set Ambitious Federal Climate Target 

AP: Business Leaders Urge Biden To Set Ambitious Climate Goal

USA Today: Texans Asked To Conserve Electricity As Power Grid Again Strained, This Time Amid Mild Weather, Maintenance

Related Articles This Week:

-- House Committee Meets April 19 To Consider Bill Authorizing Solar Energy Subscriber Programs 

-- PA Conservative Energy Forum: Harvesting Pennsylvania Clean Energy 'Land & Liberty Coalition' Grassroots Initiative

-- Talen Energy Announces $2 Billion Joint Venture With Pattern Energy To Grow Renewable Energy Generation Portfolio 

-- DEP Issues Report Assessing PA's Energy Storage Capacity For A Cleaner, More Resilient Electric Grid

-- Bradford White Water Heater Manufacturer, 5 Other PA Companies Receive 2021 EPA ENERGY STAR Partner Of Year Awards

-- DCED Awards Funding To Support Apprentice Program For Geothermal Energy Project Installation Training 

Related Articles - PA Republicans Trying To Block Renewable Energy:

-- Sen. Yaw Bill Would Load Up Renewable Energy Projects, Makers Of Energy Efficiency Products, Biomass, Coal Waste Plants, Alternative Fuels, Even High-Efficiency Locomotives With Bonds To Make Them Less Competitive

-- Sen. Yaw Plans Bills To Stop State From Supporting Solar Energy Projects With Any Foreign Components; Adopt A Moratorium On Rulemaking During A Declared Emergency

-- Sen. Yaw Introduces Bill To Preempt Local Governments From Requiring New Buildings Use Climate-Friendly Energy Sources

-- Sen. Dush Introduces Senate Bill 530 Requiring Recycling Of Solar Panels Thru Broken State Electronic Waste Recycling Program.  Read more here.

Related Articles - Some PA Republicans Trying To Promote Solar Energy:

-- Senators Laughlin, Haywood Announce Bipartisan Bill To Increase AEPS Solar Share To 5.5%

-- Business, Environment, Energy Groups Praise Introduction Of Bipartisan Bills Increasing Solar Energy Mandate From 0.5% To  5.5% In PA

[Posted: April 14, 2021]  PA Environment Digest

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