Do Solar Owners Love Solar the Way Gun Owners Love Guns?

There has been talk for years about the need for the industry to mobilize rooftop solar owners into one group that together would represent one large voice in favor of solar-friendly local, state and federal policy. With more than 1,000,0000 installations in the U.S., that voice would certainly be loud and strong.

A loud, centralized voice couldn’t be more important in U.S. politics right now, where the Trump administration is eying tariffs, policies and rules that could crush the solar industry. One such initiative is the recent DOE directive that is looking to re-write the rules around compensation for power plants, a move that would pay solar and wind facilities less than coal or nuclear generation for the energy they produce.

Coupled with the DOE rule is the solar trade case, which will ultimately be decided by Trump himself. Should he decide to implement tariffs or quotas (or both) on imported solar panels, prices that developers will have to pay for modules could increase significantly. In fact, one developer recently told Renewable Energy World his business is already come to a standstill over the threat of tariffs.

This week, the Trump administration announced it was seeking to repeal the Clean Power Plan (CPP), a federal law passed by Obama that requires U.S. states to lower carbon emissions to a stated level over the next decade.

Finally, the Trump administration has stated that cutting the solar and wind tax credits is on the table as they look to reform the U.S. tax code.

On the state level, attacks against net-metering never seem to stop, with battles cropping up in Massachusetts, Ohio, Indiana and other regions just this month.

But back to the 1,000,000 rooftop solar owners – would they fight for solar rights the way NRA (national rifle association) members fight for gun rights? One organization certainly hopes so. I talked with Anya Schoolman, Executive Director of Solar United Neighbors about how she plans to implement the NRA of solar. Have a look.

For further reading:

US Celebrates One Million Solar Installations

Secretary Perry Seeks Market Rules That ‘Properly Value’ Coal, Nuclear Generation

How Catastrophic is Perry’s NOPR for Renewables?

Section 201 Solar Trade Case Questions Answered

Who Will Fight the Repeal of the Clean Power Plan?

Trump’s Tax Reform Proposal ‘Leaves Door Open’ to Repeal ITC/PTC

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Jennifer Runyon has been studying and reporting about the world's transition to clean energy since 2007. As editor of the world's largest renewable energy publication, Renewable Energy World, she observed, interviewed experts about, and reported on major clean energy milestones including Germany's explosive growth of solar PV, the formation and development of the U.S. onshore wind industry, the U.K. offshore wind boom, China's solar manufacturing dominance, the rise of energy storage, the changing landscape for utilities and grid operators and much, much, more. Today, in addition to managing content on POWERGRID International, she also serves as the conference advisory committee chair for DISTRIBUTECH, a globally recognized conference for the transmission and distribution industry. You can reach her at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com

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