Solar Professionals Take Over the California State Capitol in Support of Energy Storage

Solar Professionals Take Over the California State Capitol in Support of Energy Storage

During California Solar & Storage Association (CALSSA) Lobby Day 2018, SMA America teammates joined hundreds of solar workers from all over California in support of SB700 – a bill that would extend incentives for residential and commercial energy storage systems.

“We’ve come out by the hundreds from all over the state to speak directly with our elected officials about the urgency of supporting energy storage in California,” said Bernadette Del Chiaro, executive director for the California Solar and Storage Association, the bill’s sponsor. ”SB 700 will do for storage what SB 1 did for solar over a decade ago, namely create a mainstream market by driving up demand and driving down costs all while creating jobs and clean energy choices for consumer.”

Wearing yellow shirts with phrases like “Solar & Storage Created my Job” and “Keep Solar & Storage Growing”, the solar and storage workers spread out into small groups to meet with legislative offices. They delivered a strong message in support of pro-solar and storage policies such as the SB 700, which would help grow the customer-sited energy storage market, create local jobs, speed the transition to renewable energy, and give communities and utilities more tools to stabilize the grid.

“Yesterday over 200 solar and storage workers descended on our State Capitol. For better or worse, policy and politics profoundly shape our industry so having the largest gathering of clean energy workers Sacramento had ever seen was equal parts inspiring and impactful,” said Josh Buswell-Charkow, Campaign Director, CA Solar & Storage Association. “Our decision makers and their staff heard firsthand from the individuals that keep our industry humming and it truly made a difference! And with SB 700 moving out of an important committee today, we are so thankful to the folks from SMA and all the other companies and their staff that took the time to participate in yesterday’s event.”

Today Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez-Fletcher announced the bill SB 700 cleared in the Assembly Appropriations committee. Next week it will proceed to the Assembly Floor where 41 votes are needed to ensure its passage out of the assembly. Once the Assembly passes the bill, it will require Senate approval before heading to the governor’s desk.

During the event, CALSSA recognized Senator Scott Wiener, author of the proposed SB 700 bill, as Legislator of the Year for his efforts to advance solar energy and storage in California.

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