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GA Solar is partnering with online training platform, HeatSpring

 

GA Solar is partnering with HeatSpring to provide online training discounts to the GA Solar community.

HeatSpring is an online educational platform for professionals specializing in renewable energy, green building, and technologies that address our changing climate. Since launching in 2006, HeatSpring has been on a mission to provide professionals the knowledge and real-world skills they need to continue making positive change in the world. 

HeatSpring instructors are industry experts, who are actively working in real-world jobs, developing and teaching top-notch curriculum for the HeatSpring community of knowledge seekers. 

Of HeatSpring’s 220 active courses, 141 of them are totally free. Some of those free courses are Introduction to Agrivoltaics, Solar Power 101, Solar Development on Brownfields & Landfills, Utility-Scale Solar PV and Distribution Voltage Challenges, Qualifying Commercial Solar Leads & Projects, and many more.

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We are not done fighting for monthly netting!

Dear Georgia Solar Members and Friends,

Last week’s IRP decision from the Georgia Public Service Commission was a mixed bag for the solar industry in Georgia. While we applaud the approval of 2.3 GW of new renewable capacity over the next three years, we are very disappointed in the failure of the Commission to advance an important and overwhelmingly popular policy for rooftop solar in the state. 

On Thursday, July 21, the Georgia Public Service Commission failed to advance a motion to expand the popular “monthly netting” program to 75,000 Georgia Power customers. The motion, put forth by Commissioner Echols and seconded by Commissioner McDonald, failed 3-2. 

We need your support to help Georgia Solar advocate for the expansion of Monthly Netting for all Georgia utility customers. Can you chip in $10 to support solar energy in Georgia?

Expanding this program would have allowed more Georgians to receive fair billing for the solar energy that they generate and supply to the distribution grid. It would have also given crucial support to a rapidly growing industry that employs thousands of Georgians. 

Georgians have spoken clearly, and they want more flexibility to adopt solar energy.  A recent poll found that an overwhelming majority (80%) of Georgians favor expanding the monthly netting program. 

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Poll: Georgians are concerned about electricity rate hikes and see solar as part of the solution.

 

For Immediate Release July 5, 2022

Poll: Georgians are concerned about electricity rate hikes and see solar as part of the solution. 
Eighty percent agree that the popular “monthly netting” program should be expanded. 

ATLANTA, GA — A new poll released [today] revealed Georgians are highly concerned about anticipated increases in their utility bills and see expanding local solar as part of the long-term solution. The poll also shows Georgians overwhelmingly support expanding a popular program that gives customers more credit for energy sent to the grid. This survey, providing state-wide data on how likely voters view rooftop solar, is sponsored by Georgia Solar Energy Association.

State-wide, the poll found that 74% of Georgia voters expressed concern about their personal utility bill increasing over the next year.  Almost half (45%) said they are “very concerned”. A solid majority (63%) feels that expanding local solar energy will help keep future utility costs lower in Georgia. When asked if the popular Georgia Power “monthly netting” program should be expanded, an overwhelming 80% said it should. 

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News Release: What can Georgia PSC learn from Florida governor’s veto?

 

MEDIA CONTACT
Patrick Hill, 770.380.3015
News Release

 

What can Georgia PSC learn from Florida governor’s veto?          
  (Psst: It’s good news for green power)

ATLANTA, May 18, 2022 – As Georgia’s Public Service Commission continues hearings on the Georgia Power Integrated Resource Plan, commissioners should look south for guidance on rooftop solar.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis vetoed a bill that would have increased exponentially the costs for installing and using rooftop solar power. Support for the veto was “overwhelming,” according to the Miami Herald. “DeSantis received 16,809 emails, letters and phone calls opposing the net metering bill. The number in support: 13,” said the article.

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Georgia Solar Energy Association names new executive director

The Georgia Solar Energy Association (GA Solar) announced Don Moreland as new executive director of the nonprofit. GA Solar was established in 2008 and is the oldest and only non-profit based in Georgia focused solely on growing a thriving solar industry in the state.

“We are thrilled to have Don, a longtime collaborator and solar champion, at the helm of GA Solar,” said GA Solar board co-chair Jennette Gayer. “Don will help grow the rooftop solar market and our organization to new success.” 

Moreland, an attorney, and owner of Solar Crowdsource, served as the nonprofit’s chair of board of directors 2017-2018 and chair of its policy committee 2021-present. He fills the recently unoccupied position as the organization implements a plan for strategic growth to bring more value to its members and engages in important solar energy legislation before lawmakers now at the state capitol and critical proceedings at the Georgia Public Service Commission later this year. 

“I am honored to have the opportunity to serve GA Solar in a new capacity during such an important year for solar energy in Georgia. GA Solar is the oldest and most well-established solar advocacy organization in Georgia and should play an important role in consumer protection legislation and provide more opportunities for every-day Georgians to participate in the new clean energy economy,” said Moreland. 

Moreland started working in the Georgia solar industry in 2011, first developing utility-scale solar projects and now owner of Solar Crowdsource, a company that has presided over 14 “Solarize” programs and facilitated over 1,000 solar installations across Georgia including Savannah, Macon, Athens, and Atlanta. A native Georgian, Moreland was born in Decatur, GA and grew up in Marietta, GA. He holds a juris doctor degree from Quinnipiac University in Connecticut and a bachelor’s degree from Georgia State University. 

 

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GA Solar Legislative Update

GA Solar was deeply engaged in behind-the-meter (BTM) solar energy legislation in this year’s legislative session. There were several bills that together would significantly remove regulatory barriers, protect consumers, and increase access for Georgia residents. Unfortunately, none of these bills made it out of committee before crossover day. The various bills can be organized in three categories: (1) consumer protections, (2) monthly netting, and (3) miscellaneous as outlined below.

Although none of these will make it to the Governor’s desk, they outline a terrific agenda for next year. GA Solar will be working throughout 2022 leading up to the next legislative session to advocate for another slate of solar-friendly legislation. Click here to learn more about how you can support GA Solar and donate here.

Consumer Protections

  • HB 966 by Representative Thomas of the 65th
    • to require that retail consumers view a solar awareness presentation prior to purchasing certain solar technology
    • Provide for the PSC to develop such solar awareness presentation and to promulgate certain rules and regulations
  • HB 1494 by Representative Gullet of the 19th
    • To require certain disclosures prior to the sale or lease of distributed energy generation systems
    • To require a companies installing solar energy systems to be licensed as an electrical contractor

Outcome: HB 966 was included in HB 1494 which GA Solar supported. HB 1494 made it further than any other bill in this list passing unanimously out of the EUT committee but stalled in House Rules and did not get a vote in the full House before crossover day.

Monthly Netting

  • HB 1083 by Representative Ed Setzler of the 35th
    • To clarify “monthly netting” in the Georgia Cogeneration and Distributed Generation Act of 2001 to be monthly.
    • To require that fees imposed on solar customers meet certain criteria;
    • to expand the state-wide cumulative limit to a larger percentage of each utility's annual peak demand;
    • to provide the commission with the authority to determine the appropriate credit available once the existing credit limit is reached

Outcome:  assigned to the EUT committee, had a subcommittee hearing; stalled in subcommittee

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