The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) announced 31 teams as finalists for The Sunny Awards for Equitable Community Solar. The Sunny Awards is a $100,000 prize competition that recognizes community solar projects and programs that employ or develop best practices to increase equitable access to the meaningful benefits of community solar for subscribers and their communities.

The finalists, representing community solar champions in 13 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, will each receive $1,000 in cash prizes and will move on to compete for one of five $10,000 Grand Prize awards. Grand Prize winners are expected to be announced in early 2023.

The finalists are also eligible to win special recognition awards for excellence in providing a specific meaningful benefit of community solar, which may include greater household electricity bill savings, low- to moderate-income household access, resilience and grid benefits, community ownership and wealth building, equitable workforce development, and innovation in community engagement and impact.

Read more about the finalists and learn about the prize competition.

The Sunny Awards is an initiative of the DOE National Community Solar Partnership (NCSP), a coalition of community solar stakeholders working to expand access to affordable community solar to every U.S. household and enable subscribers and their communities to realize its meaningful benefits.

Save the Date for the NCSP 2023 Annual Summit: Community Solar's Time to Shine

Mark your calendars for the third annual NCSP Summit to be held the week of January 16, 2023, in San Diego, CA and virtually (final date and location to be announced), in coordination with the CCSA Community Solar Power Summit! The summit will showcase the substantial progress made in community solar deployment and the bright future for community solar with meaningful benefits. Join the partnership to stay up to date on the summit details, NCSP announcements, and other community solar news.

Summary: Low-Income Community Solar Subscription Tool Request for Information

SETO released a summary of responses received from last summer’s Request for Information on the structure and development of the Low-Income Community Solar Subscription Tool. A total of 45 responses from organizations including solar developers, subscription managers, IT companies, trade associations, utilities, state and local governments, and others address questions regarding the tool’s development, technical considerations, subscription considerations, and other barriers and considerations. Read the full summary.