This model legislation is intended to accelerate the development of community solar projects nationwide by providing a common-sense statutory framework that can be adopted by states that currently have no legislation, and also serve as a basis for amending current legislation that has proved ineffective. Doing so will advance three primary policy goals. First, it reduces GHG emissions by displacing fossil fuel generation with new renewable energy resources. Second, it provides access to renewable energy to all residential and commercial customers, including those for whom installation of solar panels on their home or business is not feasible – providing critical energy justice co-benefits. Third, it increases the reliability and resiliency of the existing electric utility grid by distributing generating resources.
This model state community solar legislation is based on legislation already enacted in several states, including Colorado, Massachusetts, New York and Minnesota, as well as model legislation and a “Community Solar Policy Decision Matrix” prepared by the Coalition for Community Solar Access. Where appropriate, the model law references provisions from these sources to highlight key principles and policy options.