Authors:  PACE Nation         Published:    11/12/2020                  PACE

 

 

 

 

Earlier this week, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Lab published a study, “The Impact of Policies and Business Models on Income Equity in Rooftop Solar Adoption,” that includes new findings on the positive impacts of PACE for low- and middle-income homeowners.

The study, published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Energy, was co-authored by Galen Barbose, Ryan Wiser, Sydney Forrester, and Naim Darghouth of Berkeley Lab’s Electricity Markets & Policy group.

The researchers studied the impacts of five policies on the adoption of solar PV among low- and middle-income households. Three policies, including PACE, were found to increase adoption among these traditionally underserved homeowners and led to a more equitable distribution of solar PV installations.

Berkeley Lab noted that the analysis “found that the first three types of interventions – targeted incentives, leasing, and PACE – are effective at increasing adoption equity. “The results for those three interventions are pretty strong,” O’Shaughnessy said. “And the research also provides evidence that these interventions are leading to both deepening, or expanding in existing markets, and broadening, or moving into new markets – low-income areas where there traditionally was not solar.” [1]

The study adds to a growing body of research, including the recent USC study “The Impact of PACE Funding on Solar Adoption,” that found PACE availability drives large increases in the adoption of solar technology.

View the study

Earlier this week, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Lab published a study, “The Impact of Policies and Business Models on Income Equity in Rooftop Solar Adoption,” that includes new findings on the positive impacts of PACE for low- and middle-income homeowners.

The study, published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Energy, was co-authored by Galen Barbose, Ryan Wiser, Sydney Forrester, and Naim Darghouth of Berkeley Lab’s Electricity Markets & Policy group.

The researchers studied the impacts of five policies on the adoption of solar PV among low- and middle-income households. Three policies, including PACE, were found to increase adoption among these traditionally underserved homeowners and led to a more equitable distribution of solar PV installations.

Berkeley Lab noted that the analysis “found that the first three types of interventions – targeted incentives, leasing, and PACE – are effective at increasing adoption equity. “The results for those three interventions are pretty strong,” O’Shaughnessy said. “And the research also provides evidence that these interventions are leading to both deepening, or expanding in existing markets, and broadening, or moving into new markets – low-income areas where there traditionally was not solar.” [1]

The study adds to a growing body of research, including the recent USC study “The Impact of PACE Funding on Solar Adoption,” that found PACE availability drives large increases in the adoption of solar technology.

View the study

Eric O’ShaughnessyGalen L BarboseRyan H WiserSydney ForresterNaïm R Darghouth  Published: 11/12/2020    Electricity Markets & Policy

Abstract

Low- and moderate-income (LMI) households are less likely to adopt rooftop solar photovoltaics (PV) than higher income households in the United States. As the existing literature has shown, this dynamic can decelerate rooftop PV deployment and has potential energy justice implications, in light of the cost-shifting between PV and non-PV households that can occur under typical rate structures and incentive programs. Here we show that some state policy interventions and business models have expanded PV adoption among LMI households. We find evidence that LMI-specific financial incentives, PV leasing, and property-assessed financing have increased the diffusion of PV adoption among LMI households in existing markets and have driven more installations into previously under-served low-income communities. By shifting deployment patterns, we posit that these interventions could catalyze peer effects to increase PV adoption in low-income communities even among households that do not directly benefit from the interventions.