Solar Energy Education for US Governments

12 KW solar array on the Portland Water Bureau Meter Shop
12 KW solar array on the Portland Water Bureau Meter Shop. The largest system entirely owned by the City of Portland.
Solar America Cities

The U.S. Department of Energy has announced up to $10 million over five years for two organizations to help accelerate the adoption of solar energy among local governments. The selected organizations, the International City-County Management Association (ICMA), and International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives-Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI) will conduct outreach to thousands of local governments across the nation, sharing best practices for increasing solar energy use in their communities.

ICMA and ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability will receive approximately $5 million each and will help provide responsive and proactive outreach to local governments to accelerate the implementation of solar technology deployment. They will reach local governments nationwide by providing a mix of educational workshops, peer-to-peer sharing opportunities, and national Web-based resources. Additionally, these two organizations will help local governments overcome technical barriers to solar energy adoption by sharing resources that have been developed through other DOE-sponsored activities, such as the Solar America Cities program.

Through the Solar America Cities program, a partnership effort with 25 U.S. cities, the Department of Energy has developed solar energy outreach materials including case studies with lessons learned, a compilation of best practices titled “Solar Powering Your Community: A Guide for Local Governments,” and other resources that cities across the nation can utilize. A key tenet of the Solar America Cities program is the ability to replicate successes by sharing best practices among cities.

This effort highlights DOE’s commitment to help local governments accelerate widespread adoption of solar energy, which will reduce global climate change, strengthen America’s energy independence, and support the transition to a clean energy economy. Through collaborative outreach strategies, DOE aims to empower cities across the nation to broadly integrate solar energy into their communities.

International City-County Management Association, in Washington, D.C., provides publications, data, information, technical assistance, and training to thousands of city, town, and county experts. ICMA will partner with the American Planning Association (APA) and the National Association of Regional Councils (NARC) under this award to deliver information on solar technologies to their thousands of local government members as well as local communities across the country.

ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability, in Boston, Massachusetts, is an international association of local governments as well as national and regional local government organizations that have made a commitment to sustainable development. ICLEI will partner with the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC), North Carolina State University, the Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA), Meister Consultants Group, and The Solar Foundation under this award to provide tailored technical assistance and one-on-one workshops for local governments across the country.

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