The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has announced its strong support for HR 3001 – legislation introduced in Congress by Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) that will allow 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. Earlier this year, Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI) introduced similar legislation.
“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. “This forward-looking legislation 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. Rep. Welch should be applauded for his commitment to improving our environment, while helping to save significant money for American taxpayers. We strongly support this legislation.”
The U.S. solar energy 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.