Working With Utilities

This section includes information and resources on working with local utilities on local solar energy implementation.

Utility Ownership of Rooftop Solar PV

Utility Ownership of Rooftop Solar PV: An Emerging Business Model for Municipal Utilities provides an overview of the issues and opportunities a municipal utility is likely to encounter in the development of a utility-owned rooftop solar program. Prepared by the NC Clean Energy Technology Center and Meister Consultants Group, the report describes business models and important considerations for designing a program, drawing on case studies from three existing utility programs.

The Role of Municipal Utilities in Driving Solar Development

Municipal utilities have been at the forefront of solar development in many ways, ranging from early incentive programs to recent community shared solar programs. This brief by the Solar Foundation explores the nature of municipal utilities and how their governance grants them the flexibility to pursue solar independently, examines the advantages and disadvantages of municipal Read More »

Community Shared Solar: Diverse Approaches for a Common Goal

Community-shared solar makes it easy for individuals and organizations unable to take advantage of on-site renewable energy generation to benefit from distributed generation. From California to New York, community-shared solar programs are making a strong showing, especially among utilities. And consumers are the beneficiaries, from renters and individuals who live in multi-tenant buildings, to those who don’t have adequate or appropriate Read More »

Working with Your Local Investor-Owned Utility

The objective of this webinar is to advance the deployment of solar energy by providing local government representatives an opportunity to gain insights into how best to work with their local investor-owned utilities (IOU). Participants of this free webinar will come way with a better understanding of how IOUs view solar, how to best work Read More »

Solar Case Study: Dubuque, IA

In 2011, Dubuque, Iowa decided to renew its focus on sustainability by installing solar panels atop its municipal services building.  As a pioneer in this arena, Dubuque encountered a potential hurdle: the solar panel vendor found itself at odds with a state board, and the ensuing legal dispute eventually reached the Iowa Supreme Court.  Two Read More »

Integrating Community Solar PV into Green Power Programs

Utility-run community solar programs are a key way to integrate solar PV into utility green power programs while addressing utility ratemaking concerns. In addition, these programs are important for meeting demand for PV from all utility customers, particularly those whose residences are shaded, live in apartment complexes, or are otherwise unable to invest in a rooftop solar installation.

Working with Your Local Electric Utility Webinar

Cooperation between local governments and electrical utilities is essential to accelerating broad deployment of renewable energy. This webinar focused on learning how to work with your utility to create improved conditions for bringing renewable energy online. We focused on topics related to working with electric cooperatives on solar. To access a recording of the webinar, click here.

Ask the Utility Webinar: Working With Your Local Municipal Utility

This webinar focused on a discussion with municipal utility representatives about the opportunities and limitations of increasing distributed solar electricity, and how municipal utilities have worked successfully with local governments to implement best practices and policies around solar development and interconnection.

This webinar educated local government professionals who are interested in learning about how to better collaborate with municipal utilities to develop solar projects in their community. Participants of this webinar will come away with a better understanding of the following issues: how municipal utilities view solar, how to best work with your muni and other utilities, and how to leverage electric utility expertise. To access a recording of the webinar, click here.

Solar America Cities Podcast: Solar in San Antonio

Liza Meyer, a Special Projects Manager with the City of San Antonio, discusses San Antonio’s work as one of the Department of Energy’s 25 Solar America Cities. San Antonio was named as a Solar America City in 2008 and the city worked with local non-profits to increase financing options for homeowners, as well as with CPS Energy, its municipal utility, on large scale solar installations. In 2011, San Antonio and its project partners were named as one of 22 teams awarded under DOE’s Rooftop Solar Challenge, a program for local and regional teams to drive significant improvements in market conditions for rooftop solar photovoltaics. This podcast explores the city’s successes, challenges, and lessons learned. To listen to this podcast, click here.

Solar Podcast: Utilities, Local Governments, and Solar

In this podcast, Becky Campbell, a Research Manager with the Solar Electric Power Association discusses utilities and solar. This podcast covers what utilities see as some of the benefits and concerns when it comes to solar, and how local governments can effectively work with utilities to go solar.

Click here to view this podcast.