By Autumn Long, Program Director for Solar United Neighbors of West Virginia, a member of West Virginians For Energy Freedom’s coalition.
West Virginians will be left behind if our elected officials do not act quickly and assertively to create a policy environment that encourages growth, competition and diversification in this newly unfolding energy system. While neighboring states attract major investments, expand their tax bases and create thousands of new jobs in the renewable energy sector, our state offers little to encourage innovative entrepreneurship or entice large employers that increasingly demand access to renewable energy.
The good news is that our lawmakers can take specific steps to encourage renewable energy development and investment in West Virginia. Chief among them is legalizing solar Power Purchase Agreements, a popular solar financing method that is available in 26 states, as well as Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico.