Welcome to our first news roundup of 2022! This week, we discuss an update in smart meter technology and a bill in Washington that could increase accessibility to community solar for low income customers.
Community solar developer Arcadia offers software to digitize energy data
Arcadia, currently one of the largest community solar project developers in the country, recently launched Arc: a technology platform designed to help consumers save on their energy bills, while also facilitating investments in renewable energy. Regarding the product, Arcadia’s CEO Kiran Bhatraju told Canary Media, “Energy innovation has been blocked by fossil fuel utility monopolies for more than 130 years. Every major industry has digitized data to innovate — health care, telecom, real estate financing all use data to digitize and innovate. But energy never got the memo.” Through their Arc product, Arcadia aims to expand upon existing smart meter technology and provide consumers with the ability to optimize their energy usage and support renewable energy at the same time.
Washington legislature considering new community solar incentive program
Washington Representatives Sharon Shewmake and Liz Berry recently introduced new legislation which aims to make community solar more accessible to low income residents. If passed, House Bill (HB) 1814 would establish an incentive for community solar project developers to provide lower rates to low income customers. The total allowable incentive payments would be capped at $20 million, with at least $2 million set aside for innovative approaches by nonprofit organizations, and another $2 million set aside for tribal governments. HB 1814 also stipulates that new community solar projects be placed exclusively on preferred sites such as buildings or industrial sites, and not on natural or working land.