Bringing the Benefits of Solar to Affordable Housing: The California Nonprofit Solar Stakeholders Coalition Plan (Part 2 of 2)

Thursday, September 29, 2016 @ 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

In this two-part webinar series, members of the Nonprofit Solar Stakeholders Coalition presented details from the ground-breaking proposal they compiled to guide implementation of California’s new $1 billion dollar affordable housing solar program. This comprehensive plan is the first of its kind in the nation.

California’s Multifamily Solar Roofs Program, which was authorized by the passage AB 693, is a response to the profound gap in the level of solar installations serving low-income renters and disadvantaged communities. When operational in 2017, it will be the first program in the country specifically designed to provide low-income renters with increased access to the electricity generated from on-site solar energy systems and ensure direct economic benefits from solar credits allocated to each low-income household. The program will have the capacity to bring integrated solar energy benefits to more than 150,000 low-income households over the next ten years.

In response to a request for AB 693 implementation proposals, a diverse group of the state’s leading low-income, environmental, and affordable housing groups came together to submit a plan to the California Public Utilities Commission. The Nonprofit Solar Stakeholders Coalition (California Housing Partnership, California Environmental Justice Alliance, Brightline Defense Project, Natural Resources Defense Council, and National Housing Law Project) prepared a joint proposal calling for the adoption of an integrated energy strategy combining energy efficiency, solar PV, and energy storage devices to reduce energy use and costs. Further, the joint proposal requests special efforts to target solar energy systems installations in disadvantaged communities and to provide job opportunities in low-income and disadvantaged communities. The plan also recommends that an independent, statewide administrator run the program to improve upon the performance of past solar energy programs.

Beyond California, this plan – and its coalition strategy – could serve as a model for how states and communities can take action to build a more sustainable energy future in which low-income tenants can share in the benefits of the new clean energy economy.

In Part 2 of this webinar series, topics discussed included:

  • Energy efficiency
  • Energy storage
  • Tenant benefit allocation and program incentive structure
  • Potential program outcomes


  • Maria Stamas, Project Attorney – Energy and Climate, Natural Resources Defense Council
  • Wayne Waite, Waite & Associates
  • Seth Mullendore, Project Director, Clean Energy Group
  • Jim Grow, Senior Staff Attorney, National Housing Law Project
  • Kent Qian, Staff Attorney, National Housing Law Project

This is Part 2 of a two-part webinar series hosted by Clean Energy Group’s Resilient Power Project. Slides and a recording of Part 1 are available here.