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PosiGen Celebrates DOE's Low-Income Bonus Program for Energy Equity

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"With the closure of the initial 30-day application window, PosiGen applauds the Department of Energy Office of Energy Justice and Equity and the Department of Treasury for their successful launch of the Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program. We are grateful for the thoughtfulness, preparation, and hard work of the Department of Energy and Treasury teams throughout the implementation of the Low-Income Communities Program which has led to a smooth program launch," said Kyle Wallace, VP of Public Policy & Government Affairs for PosiGen. Wallace continued, "This program represents a historic commitment and investment in low-income and underserved communities across the country. PosiGen is looking forward to the remainder of the 2023 program year and is excited to provide constructive feedback as the program evolves in 2024 and beyond.” 

Smooth Launch of the Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program

In a pivotal stride towards fostering energy justice, the Department of Energy Office of Energy Justice and Equity, in collaboration with the Department of Treasury, recently launched the groundbreaking Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program. PosiGen enthusiastically supports this Inflation Reduction Act program as a historic commitment to uplifting low-income and underserved communities across the nation. Over the next decade, this program aims to deploy 18 gigawatts of single-family, affordable multifamily, and community solar, strategically targeting areas and households that should benefit the most from the transition to clean energy.

Understanding the Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program

The Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program marks a significant step forward by providing a substantial boost to the investment tax credit for qualified solar or wind energy facilities under five megawatts (AC). This program provides a 10% or 20% tax credit increase, incentivizing cost-saving clean energy investments in low-income communities, particularly within affordable housing developments and among low-income households. With an annual allocation of up to 1.8 gigawatts of eligible solar and wind capacity in credits, this program will be a significant part of the renewable energy landscape.

Who Stands to Benefit

The IRS has carefully structured the program to benefit various categories of projects and communities, with an allocation of up to 700 megawatts for projects located in low-income communities, 200 megawatts for projects on Indian land, another 200 megawatts for qualified low-income residential building projects, and 700 megawatts for qualified low-income economic benefit projects. This strategic allocation ensures a broad and impactful reach, touching diverse segments of society and ensuring that the benefits of clean energy are equitably distributed.

The Impact of Solar Benefits in Underserved Communities

Low-income households bear a disproportionately high energy burden, with one in four reporting challenges in paying their electricity bills. This financial strain forces many low to moderate-income homeowners to make difficult choices, often compromising on essentials such as medication and healthcare. However, solar panels present a transformative solution. According to EnergySage  solar panels can save homeowners $20,000 to $96,000 throughout the system's lifespan. In addition to reducing a home’s energy burden, the solar industry also provides career opportunities and pathways to family-sustaining jobs. 

The Energy Justice Roadshow and Its Impact

During a recent Energy Justice Roadshow in Louisiana River parishes, the Secretary of the Department of Energy, Jennifer Granholm,  underscored the critical role of tax credits, energy efficiency measures, and solar energy as resources for underserved communities to "have power over your own power situation." The emphasis on community empowerment and self-sufficiency resonates with PosiGen's mission to bring tangible change to communities in need. The Energy Justice Roadshow serves as a testament to the collaborative efforts of governmental bodies, organizations like PosiGen, and communities working together towards a more equitable energy landscape.

The River Parishes stop of the Energy Roadshow, ended with a 3-day tour of the gulf south, including visits to Port Arthur, TX and Lake Charles, LA. These Port Arthur and Lake Charles events were community workshops that explained the Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program and allowed communities to hear directly from solar developers about how to better serve their communities. PosiGen, as one of the the only solar companies at the events participated in breakout sessions with community participants, answering questions about solar and describing how the IRA will support PosiGen’s efforts.

PosiGen's Impact on Disadvantaged Communities

PosiGen's impact on underserved communities is not just a slogan; it is deeply embedded in the core of the organization's activities. Operating in states like Louisiana, Mississippi, and Pennsylvania, PosiGen has made tangible strides in improving the lives of individuals and families facing economic challenges. Through the provision of solar and energy efficiency solutions, the company not only alleviates immediate financial burdens but also contributes to broader climate objectives. However, PosiGen's commitment extends far beyond the installation of solar panels. The company employs a multifaceted strategy that involves community engagement, education, and empowerment. Recognizing that genuine energy justice involves more than just access to clean energy, PosiGen conducts workshops, educational programs, and collaborates with local organizations to build resilient and informed communities actively participating in the energy transition.

As PosiGen looks ahead, its dedication to energy justice remains steadfast. The company envisions a future where clean energy is not a luxury but a fundamental right, accessible to every community irrespective of socio-economic status. PosiGen is committed to continuous innovation, ensuring that its solutions are not only effective but also adaptable to the evolving needs of communities. Acknowledging the transformative potential of technology, PosiGen aims to stay at the forefront of renewable energy advancements. By embracing emerging technologies, the company seeks to enhance the efficiency and affordability of clean energy solutions, making them even more accessible to underserved communities. In envisioning this future, PosiGen sees the Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program as a catalyst for broader systemic change, inspiring additional initiatives that promote environmental sustainability and social equity.

Conclusion

The Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program signifies a transformative step towards energy justice, addressing the needs of those who have historically been underserved. PosiGen stands as a champion of this cause, actively participating in the realization of clean energy solutions for communities in need. As the program unfolds over the next decade, the collective efforts of government initiatives, organizations like PosiGen, and the resilience of underserved communities will pave the way for a more equitable and sustainable energy future.

We remain committed to our mission of empowering communities through clean energy solutions. The journey towards energy justice is ongoing, and with collaborative efforts, innovative approaches, and sustained commitment, a future where every community has access to clean and affordable energy is within reach. PosiGen looks forward to playing a vital role in this journey, ensuring that no community is left behind in the pursuit of a sustainable and equitable energy landscape.

For more information about the Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program please see the Department of Energy’s program website

Previously: PosiGen Addresses the Additional Guidance on Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program

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