Rooftop Solar Accessibility Receives $3B Boost from Biden Administration
In a bid to make clean energy accessible to a broader demographic, Sunnova, a leading solar panel company, could extend solar panel loans to individuals with lower credit scores. This initiative is gaining momentum under the Biden administration, which is committed to promoting renewable energy and making rooftop solar panels accessible to more Americans, including those with less-than-ideal credit profiles.
A new funding allocation of $52 million was announced by the Department of Energy for solar initiatives in April. This is in addition to a $30 million commitment earmarked for research and development of novel solar technologies.
A significant stride in this direction is the provision of a $3 billion partial loan guarantee for a project by Sunnova. This project aims to serve disadvantaged communities, allowing even those with lower credit scores to harness the power of rooftop solar panels. The $3 billion fund will enable Sunnova to “offer loans for clean energy systems to an estimated 75,000 to 115,000 homeowners” across the United States and Puerto Rico, as stated by the Energy Department.
In Puerto Rico, where the power grid is often disrupted by severe weather conditions, all installations will be equipped with both rooftop solar panels and battery storage. Other installations by Sunnova may also encompass rooftop solar panels, batteries, and virtual power plant software.
Over the course of 25 years, this substantial project, which combines solar installations, battery systems, and smart software to curb energy waste, is projected to prevent approximately 7.1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions. The Energy Department anticipates this reduction over the quarter-century lifespan of the project.
The renewable energy sector has, until now, been largely inaccessible to individuals with low credit scores, primarily due to their inability to secure loans for installing this tech in their homes.
The funding not only targets social inclusivity but also aims to propel Biden’s goal of establishing a 100% clean electricity grid by 2035 and achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, as highlighted by the department. However, this loan guarantee is conditional, depending on Sunnova meeting specific milestones, and is not yet open for applications.
Sunnova, which operates across all 50 states in the US and Puerto Rico, has received positive reviews from CNET. The company offers a 25-year system guarantee and several financing options without upfront costs. It presents a simplified approach to solar energy adoption, backed by prompt customer service.
Although Sunnova’s ability to extend loans to those with less-than-perfect credit scores – thanks to government funding – is a notable advantage, it is still recommended that potential customers compare different solar panel providers before making a decision. It’s essential to get multiple quotes and scrutinize the terms and fees to ensure the best possible deal. Here is some information on the top solar companies of 2023 and how solar panels could secure you a substantial tax credit.
In a related move, the Biden administration has also announced additional funding for community solar. This initiative permits power purchases from nearby solar arrays for those who lack roof space or are renting properties. Community solar users can typically save between 5% and 10% on their energy bills while also contributing to environmental preservation.