Voters in the state expressed their support at the polls last year for affordable clean energy sources. Lawmakers there responded recently by passing Senate Bill 90 to make it easier for residents to go solar. Sunrun is betting on rising consumer demand for an affordable way to harvest the Sunshine State’s most famous renewable energy resource
Florida joins Nevada and several other states in an affirmative move for renewable energy. The bill, according to Florida House Majority Leader, Ray Rodrigues, using tax exemptions, “lowers the cost of doing business and helps Florida families” make the switch to renewable energy. Lawmakers like Rodrigues are also banking on the tax cuts-based legislation to expand economic opportunities for constituents. The state’s renewable energy portfolio is currently small. As consumer adoption of solar energy grows in one of the country’s largest energy consuming states, State Senator Jeff Brandes sees the bill as part of “a bold job growth agenda that prioritizes a diversified energy portfolio.”
The National Solar Jobs Census 2016, indicates that already nearly 260,000 Americans work in solar. This figure is several times greater than a recent U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimate of workers in the U.S. coal mining industry. A college degree is not necessary to obtain a living wage job in the solar energy industry. The emerging industry could thereby offer economic possibilities to diverse job seekers in Florida and other areas around the nation.
"There is strong demand for rooftop solar in Florida, so we are thrilled to bring this affordable clean energy solution to homeowners," said Lynn Jurich, Chief Executive Officer of Sunrun. "Rooftop solar benefits both homeowners choosing to take control of their energy needs, and communities by creating new jobs and a cleaner, more robust energy grid.”
Sunrun, using the opportunities of the new policy window, will be able to offer homeowners the choice of two financing options:
1. Owning the solar energy system outright with Sunrun BrightBuy; or
2. Financing a residential system purchase with Sunrun BrightAdvantage
The solar technology company designs, installs, finances, insures, monitors and maintains the panel systems, offering homeowners long-term, predictable pricing. The growing firm has demonstrated an ability to break into new markets by working within local frameworks and partnerships that minimize installation costs. In January, the company began a $100 million collaboration with the U.S. and British utility giant National Grid.
The current federal administration has vowed support for the fossil fuel industry. Policymakers and consumers across the nation, however, are envisioning a future of economic benefits from developing affordable cleaner energy sources. And, the private sector appears to be moving to redirect capital towards this goal. With the addition of Florida, Sunrun will provide service in 22 states – including the oil producing powerhouse Texas – thereby expanding its presence across the United States.