A new initiative, the Center for Model Policy Development, was recently launched by the Solar and Storage Industries Institute (SI2). This non-profit organization aims to harmonize state policymaking and remove barriers to the deployment of clean energy. The center will propose different policies relevant to state and local governments, providing bill templates for consideration by state leaders.
The growth of renewable energy has faced resistance from fossil fuel and natural gas advocates, who have used misinformation campaigns and influence over state policies to impede progress. However, the urgent need to transition to sustainable energy cannot be ignored. The renewables sector must present a unified front in policy matters, especially in the face of vested fossil fuel interests and the pressing timeline of the climate crisis.
While state innovation has been an important aspect of American federalism, having 50 states developing their own approaches to clean energy transition is impractical and time-consuming. It slows down the deployment of clean energy to the grid. The Center for Model Policy Development aims to address this challenge by providing templates that serve as a foundation for state leaders, facilitating pivotal discussions on clean energy policies.
The center’s first model policy focuses on clarifying the role of local governments in large-scale solar permitting. It aims to establish baseline standards and processes to encourage uniformity across a state, preventing local governments from creating hundreds of different requirements that hinder clean energy deployment.
The Center for Model Policy invites feedback and suggestions to continually improve the model policy documents. It plans to tackle other key issues, such as responsible recycling of solar panels, project decommissioning, and the future of net metering. By promoting partnership and collaboration, the center aims to set the stage for a sustainable future.
Sources: Solar and Storage Industries Institute (SI2)
- Renewable energy: Energy obtained from sources that are naturally replenished, such as sunlight, wind, and water. It is considered environmentally friendly and sustainable.
- Fossil fuels: Natural resources, such as coal, oil, and natural gas, that are formed from ancient organic matter over millions of years. They are non-renewable and contribute to carbon emissions and climate change.
- Model policy: A template or framework designed to guide policymakers in formulating legislation or regulations related to a specific issue or industry.
- Clean energy deployment: The process of implementing and utilizing clean and renewable sources of energy, such as solar and wind power, to replace traditional fossil fuel-based energy sources.
- Climate crisis: Refers to the urgent and severe challenges posed by climate change, including rising temperatures, extreme weather events, and the loss of biodiversity. It requires immediate action to mitigate its impact and transition to a sustainable future.