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Community Solar is the SOLution for New Mexico

Expand access to clean energy and boost New Mexico’s economy – right now!

Take Action

Community Solar is the

SOLution for New Mexico

Expand access to clean energy and boost New Mexico’s economy – right now!

Take Action

What's At Stake

Right now, most New Mexicans can’t power their home or business with solar energy because rooftop solar won’t work for them.

Community solar – which is currently allowed in 19 states and Washington, D.C. – provides equal access to the economic and environmental benefits of solar energy generation regardless of the condition of your roof or ownership of your home or business. This includes families of all income levels, Native American Tribes & Pueblos, municipalities, counties, schools, businesses and nonprofit entities, including low-income housing and service organizations.

But to get community solar we need to pass enabling legislation at the state capital which means we need you to take action now to urge our leaders to bring community solar to New Mexico!

Indigenous Solar Leaders

WATCH: Picuris Pueblo’s Community Solar Story

Picuris Pueblo is one of the oldest continuously inhabited communities in the United States. Today, on their ancestral land in the mountains of northern New Mexico, the people of Picuris are putting community solar to work lowering electricity bills for every family in the tribe, all while increasing community resilience and collectively combatting climate change. 

What is Community Solar?

How Community Solar Works

Community solar refers to local solar facilities shared by multiple community subscribers who receive credit on their utility bill for their share of the power produced. This model for solar is being rapidly adopted nationwide because of its significant benefits to consumers, the economy, environment and the grid.

STEP 1

A community solar project generates clean, solar energy

STEP 2:

Individuals, local businesses, schools and others sign up to receive the energy from a certain number of panels, purchased up front or pay-as-you-go.

STEP 3:

Community solar subscribers will receive a credit on their bill based on the amount of energy produced by their community solar panels.

STEP 4:

Signing up for community solar should provide tangible economic benefits and savings on your utility bill.

It's Time, New Mexico

To have community solar across New Mexico, we need to pass enabling legislation at the state capital. Community solar is spreading across the country thanks in part to smart state policies. Currently, 19 states and Washington, D.C. already have community solar programs. It’s time New Mexicans get to access the benefits of affordable clean energy.

Benefits of Community Solar

Customer Bill Savings

Subscribers usually save 5-15% on their electric utility bills, and with a project lifespan of 25-30 years, customers can expect long-term savings and cost certainty through their subscriptions. 

Jobs & Economic Opportunity

Community solar will bring to New Mexico tens of millions of dollars in private investment, create thousands of new clean energy jobs, create opportunities for farmers and landowners to make extra money, and increase tax revenues for cities and towns. All of this will be created without raising taxes!

Equitable Access

Community solar works for anyone with an electric bill, including renters, condo owners, municipalities, non-profits and businesses that don’t own their roofs. That means community solar gives ALL New Mexicans equal access to solar. 

It also offers a near-term solution to provide opportunities for New Mexicans to benefit from and have ownership of local projects.

Meeting Renewable Energy Goals

Community solar will allow New Mexicans access to the solar market set forth by Governor Lujan Grisham’s bold clean energy agenda through the Environment Transition Act. Utility-scale, rooftop solar and community solar can all work together to help New Mexico transition to 50% renewable energy by 2030 and 80% by 2040. Community solar provides a pathway for all customers to reach their specific goals even sooner.

What's Happening: Community Solar Working Group

Senate Memorial 63 requests “the New Mexico Legislative Council to arrange for a third-party facilitator to convene a working group to review statewide community solar initiatives and develop recommendations for the implementation of those initiatives.”

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The Working Group is composed of representatives from the Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department (EMNRD); the Public Regulation Commission (PRC); the State Land Office; utility companies; rural electric cooperatives; renewable energy industry representatives; environmental organizations; Indian nations, tribes and pueblos; low-income service providers; local governments, cities, counties; and interested community members from throughout the state. 

The Working Group will report its findings and recommendations to the appropriate interim legislative committee by October 1, 2020. 

For more information about the Working Group, please contact nmcommunitysolar@gmail.com

About the SOLution New Mexico Coalition

SOLution New Mexico aims to help increase access to solar energy to all New Mexicans and rebuild New Mexico’s economy and rural communities with clean, locally produced community solar. The coalition is made up of a diverse group of local industry, agriculture and clean energy advocates who are calling on New Mexico legislators to pass community solar legislation that would use private investment to increase access to solar energy and boost New Mexico’s economy.

Contact: Mayane Barudin, Interior West Manager & Tribal Liason, Vote Solar at mayane@votesolar.org

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