The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) voted Sept. 12 to approve program implementation for the Disadvantaged Communities – Single-family Solar Homes (DAC-SASH) program. A major new investment in expanding solar access, DAC-SASH aims to increase the adoption of clean, affordable solar power by low-income households in disadvantaged communities. It builds off of California’s groundbreaking SASH program, which has helped 8,500 low-income families go solar over the last ten years, and provided over 16,500 job training students with hands-on solar installation experience.
Like SASH, DAC-SASH is administered by GRID Alternatives, a national non-profit leader in making clean energy technology and jobs accessible to underserved communities. The Commissioners’ unanimous vote approves the DAC-SASH Program Handbook and Implementation Plan created by GRID, and allows the program to scale throughout the state’s Investor-Owned Utility territories of Pacific Gas & Electric Company, Southern California Edison Company, and San Diego Gas & Electric Company.
“California is a national leader in expanding access to renewable energy to communities that can benefit the most,” said Cathleen Monahan, VP of program administration with GRID Alternatives. “We are excited to implement a high-impact statewide program that will reduce energy bills for low-income families and create meaningful workforce development while providing robust consumer protection.”
DAC-SASH will provide $8.5 million in incentives annually through 2030 to reduce the cost of going solar for qualifying households, with a focus on communities most impacted by high energy costs. The program will also integrate job training opportunities into every project, creating ladders of opportunity for individuals from all backgrounds to access well-paid jobs in California’s solar industry, and ensuring lasting community benefit. A new job training portal will provide community members with streamlined access to solar job training and employment opportunities.
“The CPUC Energy Division is pleased that the DAC SASH program resulting from Assembly Bill (AB) 327 has been approved and can begin to be implemented across the state, furthering the CPUC’s investment in programs targeting DACs,” said Edward Randolph, the CPUC’s deputy executive director for energy and climate policy. “We look forward to working with GRID Alternatives and program stakeholders to ensure the program provides maximum impact in our most vulnerable communities.”
To qualify for DAC-SASH, customers must meet income qualifications and live in the top 25% most disadvantaged communities statewide using the CalEnviroScreen. GRID is currently accepting applications to DAC-SASH through its Energy for All Program.
News item from GRID Alternatives