IndyStar: “Indiana ranked worst state for rooftop solar. Here’s why fewer Hoosiers have it.”

Indiana residents rallying for solar energy incentives before the state phased out its net metering policy that helped more Hoosiers go solar

The Indianapolis Star recently reported on a new Consumer Affairs rating that ranks the Hoosier State dead last for rooftop solar:

Indiana’s legislators began phasing out this incentive in 2017, and the benefits of net metering for new solar installations ultimately expired in 2022.

Net metering’s incentives were replaced with a system that pays homeowners much less for that excess power they generate from the rooftop or residential solar installation. The erosion of these economic incentives by Indiana’s lawmakers has resulted in a reduction in rooftop solar installations.

Indianapolis Star, Feb. 26, 2024

Are there other ways Hoosiers might be able to access solar energy? It’s possible, thanks to a $7 billion federal effort that’s part of the Inflation Reduction Act.

How Solar for All Can Help States Leverage Community Solar to Expand Clean Energy

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is awarding grants through a program called Solar for All to states, territories and other organizations to increase access to solar energy for low-income communities. The program aims to install solar panels on millions of low-income homes.

Community solar is a solar energy generation model in which a group of people share the benefits of a solar installation. This can be a great way for low-income residents to participate in the solar energy market, as they may not be able to afford to install solar panels on their own homes or may be renting the homes they live in.

Through this competition, Solar for All will award up to 60 grants to states, territories, Tribal governments, municipalities, and nonprofits to expand the number of low-income and disadvantaged communities primed for residential solar investment—enabling millions of low-income households to access affordable, resilient, and clean solar energy.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Feb. 7, 2024

Solar for All grants could potentially be used to support a variety of community solar projects, including:

  • Installing solar panels on affordable housing developments
  • Building community solar farms that serve low-income residents
  • Developing solar energy programs for low-income communities

By leveraging community solar, states could use Solar for All grants to expand clean energy access and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Benefits of Solar for All

Solar for All offers a number of benefits, including:

  • Increased access to clean energy for low-income communities
  • Reduced greenhouse gas emissions
  • Job creation in the clean energy sector
  • Economic development in low-income communities