Saying it will “benefit both the economy and environment,” the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has announced its strong support for legislation introduced by Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), allowing the General Services Administration (GSA) to enter into 30-year renewable energy power purchase agreements (PPA). The GSA is an independent agency which manages and supports the basic functioning of the federal government, including procurement. Under current law, only the U.S. military can enter into power purchase agreements for longer than 10 years.
“When it comes to America’s clean energy future, this is an important step forward – one that promises to benefit both the economy and environment,” said SEIA President and CEO Rhone Resch. “The Federal Energy Savings Enhancement Act (SB 1277) would allow all federal agencies to enjoy the significant cost benefits currently enjoyed by the U.S. military through the use of long-term PPAs. Sen. Hirono should be applauded for her commitment to improving our environment, while helping to save significant money for American taxpayers. We strongly support this legislation.”
Today, the U.S. solar industry employs 174,000 Americans nationwide – more than tech giants Apple, Google, Facebook and Twitter combined – and pumps nearly $18 billion a year into the economy. This remarkable growth is due, in large part, to smart and effective public policies, such as the solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), Net Energy Metering (NEM) and Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS). By any measurement, Resch said, these policies are paying huge dividends for both the U.S. economy, as well as for the environment.