SB 392 To Expand Access to Solar for All and Bring Hundreds of Millions in Clean Energy Investment to Nevada

June 8th, 2017

Legislation passed with bipartisan support in the Senate and Assembly would enable the development of community solar in the Silver State

Carson City, NV (June 8, 2017) – The Coalition for Community Solar Access (CCSA) today rallies behind the broad bipartisan support in passing SB 392, and calls on Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval to sign the bill into law. The legislation would create a community solar program in the state – expanding access to the benefits of solar to all customers, including renters, condo owners, and small businesses – for the first time. SB392 could bring hundreds of millions of dollars in private investment in new clean energy in communities throughout the state.

CCSA is the nation’s only business-led trade organization for community solar: its 32 members represent the leaders of the industry in the United States, and billions of dollars in clean energy investments across the country. CCSA Members stand at the ready to enter the Nevada market in its effort to expand access to solar to Nevadans that do not have access today.

“To say that SB 392 is landmark legislation is not an understatement,” declared CCSA executive director Jeff Cramer. “Through SB 392, all Nevadans would, for the first time, have the opportunity to participate in a solar project in their community and see the savings on their electric bill. The legislation creates a 200 megawatt community solar garden program for the state which would enable renters, condo owners, businesses that lease space, and those who may not have suitable roofs for solar panels the opportunity to sign up to participate in a community solar garden and receive a credit on their utility bill for their portion of the clean energy produced.”

SB 392 received strong bipartisan support from both chambers of the Nevada Legislature. The Senate approved the measure 17-4 and the Assembly approved the measure 30-12. Enacting the bill would increase the benefits of solar for all Nevadans and expand the choices that consumers have to participate in the solar economy.

Specifically, enacting SB 392 would do the following:

  • Establish a statewide community solar goal of 200 MW by 2023;
  • Apply best practice, industry standard definitions and approaches to support private sector investment;
  • Prescribe certain program elements and direct the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN) to develop rules for the overall program; and
  • Establish a bill crediting structure that aligns with AB 405, which addressed rooftop solar systems.

Additionally, enacting SB 392 would direct the PUCN to develop rules to ensure that 10% of the program is available for low-income ratepayers and service organizations. The bill authorizes the PUCN to utilize $1 million annually from existing funds to help support low-income participation.

With the enactment of this bill, Nevada would join the 14 States and District of Columbia that already have community solar programs. Of these states, 10 also have some form of retail choice for electricity sales.

“This forward-thinking, consumer choice-focused program that enables the production of local, clean, reliable energy makes sense for Nevada’s economy, environment and future. We hope the Governor will see the wisdom of enacting this important legislation into law,” added Cramer.

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About CCSA: Founded in February 2016, CCSA is a business-led trade organization that works to expand access to clean, local, affordable energy nationwide through community solar. Community solar refers to local solar facilities shared by individual community members, who receive credits on their electricity bills for their portion of the power produced. Community solar projects provide American homeowners, renters and businesses access to the benefits of solar energy generation unconstrained by the physical attributes of their home or business, like roof space, shading, or whether or not they own their residence or building. These programs can also expand access to solar energy to low-income households. For more information, visit the website at www.communitysolaraccess.org, follow the Coalition on Twitter at @solaraccess and like the Coalition on Facebook at www.facebook.com/communitysolaraccess.