The Energy Department announced $13 million in funding for a new program that will provide access to affordable and renewable solar energy to meet America’s electricity needs. The Solar Powering America by Recognizing Communities (SPARC) funding opportunity supports the Energy Department’s SunShot Initiative, which seeks to make solar power cost-competitive with other forms of electricity by the end of the decade.
SPARC funds are available for establishing a national recognition and technical assistance program for local governments. The program will provide national distinction and give communities access to solar energy experts who will provide technical assistance and share best practices. The Energy Department has set a goal of improving solar market conditions by minimizing red tape and decreasing costs so that solar costs just six cents per kilowatt hour in the next few years. The department is accepting SPARC applications now.