Efforts to move favorable solar legislation forward, both at the federal and state levels, are crucial.

The enactment of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) in 2022 followed by vast efforts to implement the landmark law in 2023 marks a watershed moment for the solar industry. Commitment to domestic solar manufacturing brought about a renewed sense of optimism that had been absent for several years.

In 2023, the solar landscape experienced significant shifts as various states took decisive legislative actions to broaden the scope of community solar programs, thereby advancing the democratization of solar power access. Maryland, for instance, chose to build on its successful community solar pilot program, taking what they’ve learned over the last 7 years and building a permanent program. Similarly, Minnesota bolstered its thriving community solar garden program and created a separate Distributed Generation program. These achievements, coupled with positive actions nationwide, defined 2023 as a standout year for the solar industry setting the stage for continued growth in 2024.

However, amidst the optimism, 2023 brought its own set of challenges, including delays in IRA guidance, unclear solar regulations and persistent supply chain issues. Looking ahead to 2024, industry stakeholders anticipate the formulation of clear and final federal rules and regulations. Such clarity is poised to provide significant impetus to the ongoing success of the solar industry.

Beyond regulatory considerations, the solar industry recognizes the importance of advocacy and engagement with policymakers. Efforts to move favorable solar legislation forward, both at the federal and state levels, are crucial. A notable example is the initiative led by Pennsylvania House Representative Peter Schweyer, who introduced House Bill 1842 in 2023 to establish a statewide community solar program. Ongoing discussions in 2024 present an opportunity to propel this and similar bills across the finish line through strategic education and engagement.

As the industry sets its sights on 2024, there is a prevailing sense of anticipation and commitment among stakeholders. The successes of the past year serve as a solid foundation upon which the solar industry aims to build, with a collective determination to make 2024 the most successful year in its storied history.