Center for Rural Affairs awarded over $60 million for Solar For All projects – KMTV 3 News Now Omaha

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LYONS, Neb (KMTV) — Across Nebraska our farmers and ranchers rely on the power of the sun to fuel the growth of the crops that feed our nation.

And now an effort has begun to use that same resource to bring renewable energy to every corner of the state.

“Its really about ensuring that low-income residents and historically excluded populations can participate in solar energy and the benefits including bill savings, jobs in their communities as well as greenhouse gas reductions,” said Brian Depew, Executive Director of the Center for Rural Affairs.

The effort to bring solar to rural communities has been jump started by over $7 billion dollars in grant funding from the Biden administration’s Solar for All project.

Here in Nebraska, a little over $62 million dollars in that funding is going to the Center for Rural Affairs to help build out solar projects all of sizes.

Whether it’s roof mounted solar panels for residential use, working with developers to implement solar power into new housing developments or even helping build community solar arrays like those found in Fremont or Wahoo.

“It’s not just the financial products we can provide, which will be low interest loans, grants, subsidies into the projects but also technical assistance. To help individuals navigate the process of working with a solar developer or working with their local utility, working to get finance for their projects its a whole suite of services,” said Depew.

The Solar for All program is expected to run for 5 years but Depew isn’t thinking about it as a short term solution.

He hopes Solar for All will help plant the seeds that rural communities will be able to reap the benefits from for generations to come.

“Our intention is to build a long lasting program to continue to evolve the funds and technical assistance so that we can build on the initial traunch of work that we were able to do to continue to help more and more people in these communities benefit over time,” said Depew.

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