Federal money will help all Missourians benefit from solar energy – KSMU Radio

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Missouri will receive $156 million under the federal Inflation Reduction Act’s Solar for All program. President Joe Biden signed the act into law in August, 2022.

The Missouri funds are earmarked for helping low-income residents benefit from solar, either from their rooftop or from community solar projects, according to Renew Missouri. That’s a nonprofit that advocates for clean energy for all Missourians.

“I feel like a lot of people see renewable energy and solar as something that people of privilege get to take advantage of, that the cost and the effort to put it in is prohibitive for many people, especially folks who might have limited income,” said James Owen, Renew Missouri’s executive director. “And to apply this to customers across the entire spectrum of income, I think, could really be impactful on a lot of different levels, mainly on people’s pocketbooks.”

Owen said, like all federal funds that are awarded to state agencies, the grant must go through the appropriation process at the State Capitol. Since the state applied for the funds, he is hopeful they will be included in Missouri’s budget, which is required to submitted to the governor by Friday, May 10.

He said, in the meantime, Renew Missouri will work with utility companies, state leaders and other stakeholders to make sure the process is fair and equitable. According to Owen, his organization looks forward to helping the state find those who need the money the most and “make sure solar is deployed quickly so they can begin to enjoy the benefits.”

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