To support rapid deployment of affordable and accessible community solar, the National Community Solar Partnership (NCSP) offers free, rolling technical assistance that provides the resources needed to swiftly and successfully implement affordable, sustainable community solar programs that ensure benefits flow to all.

What is Technical Assistance?

Technical assistance provides personalized support to organizations deploying community solar to help them accelerate implementation, improve the performance of their program or project, and build capacity for future community solar development. The Technical Assistance Program connects program participants with community solar experts to help them address their most pressing challenges.

NCSP Partners can apply for technical assistance support in 5 areas:

  • Policy, legislation, and regulation research
  • Project financing analysis
  • Outreach and engagement strategies
  • Program design
  • Technical issues

Organizations can receive support in a variety of formats including:

  • Consultation on program processes and policies and technical review of proposed plans and models
  • Technical and financial analysis and modeling of potential program costs, benefits and impacts
  • Custom research such as market studies or third party white papers
  • Custom publications such as toolkits, tip sheets, or case studies

Eligibility

The Technical Assistance Program is open at any time to any NCSP member that is a citizen or permanent resident of the United States, however, technical assistance cannot support any activities that are already supported by other Department of Energy funding.  

Join the partnership and get involved with community solar today.

Process

This graphic shows the process and steps of applying for technical assistance.

How to Apply

Step 1: Register to become a partner with the National Community Solar Partnership and ensure you meet all other eligibility criteria. If you are already an NCSP partner, please begin with Step 2.

Step 2: Click on the ‘Resources’ tab on the NCSP Mobilize site. Navigate to the ‘Quick Links’ box and click on the ‘Technical Assistance Application’ link.

Step 3: Complete the application form. The application includes information about your organization, a brief description (100 words) of the technical assistance you seek, and what steps you have taken so far. If you have any questions while filling out the form, please email communitysolar@ee.doe.gov.

Step 4: When the application is complete, press submit. You will receive a confirmation email that your submission has been received. You will be contacted by a representative of NCSP with a decision and next steps.

Collaboratives

Technical assistance is also delivered through collaboratives, working groups of multiple partners seeking to address a similar issue within their industry that could benefit from dedicated peer exchange in addition to support from technical experts. NCSP currently supports two collaboratives, however, Partners are encouraged to suggest and form collaboratives on an ongoing basis.

Municipal Utility Collaborative

The Municipal Utility Collaborative consists of 7 municipal utility providers that receive support from technical experts and learn from their peers in order to create or scale programs that expand affordable community solar access to low income and other underserved communities. Collaborative members work together to address common barriers to community solar development such as identifying siting locations, procurement, contracting, unique energy systems, and program design and finance. Through this collaborative, members will co-create a workbook that will provide guidance and resources to any municipal utility considering implementing community solar. 

Multifamily Affordable Housing Collaborative

The Multifamily Affordable Housing Collaborative convenes and supports 13 multifamily affordable housing providers to identify replicable models for community solar deployment that reduce monthly electric utility bills by at least 10% or provide other direct benefits for low-income residents of multifamily housing. Technical webinars and peer networking will focus on challenges with ownership and financing, program models for various property types, tenant benefits, and technology integration. The collaborative will ultimately produce a toolkit that will allow multifamily affordable housing providers to screen their portfolio of properties and identify suitable locations for community solar.