2024 KCP Application
Rural Renewable Energy Alliance
Customers & Partnerships
Primary Project Category:
Project Summary / Description:
40 million Americans live in energy poverty and must choose between home energy and other basic needs. Fortunately, families with a high energy burden qualify for bill assistance through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, an annual federal safety net that pays households‚ energy bills. Nationwide, we spend billions of dollars annually on this program without permanently addressing energy poverty or cutting carbon emissions. Energy assistance is a safety net, but a stop-gap is not a solution. Our model, CS4CA, is a fiscally responsible, environmentally appropriate method of delivering bill assistance to families for decades rather than a single year.
Regions of Operations:
Best Estimate of GHG Avoidance/Reduction of This Project (Tonnes CO2 Equivalent/Year):
Impact on Underrepresented Groups:
This woman-led project is supporting low-income families with CS4CA Solar Assistance. Energy poverty affects one in eight Minnesotans, but it is particularly acute in rural communities and communities of color. The White Earth community has a poverty rate of 42.2%, well above that of the Minnesota average of 10.8%. Electricity bills disproportionally affects low-income families. Notably, energy burden increases at lower levels of income, suggesting that energy expenditures create unsustainable cycles of poverty. Our project will install a 200-kilowatt community solar array in partnership with the White Earth Nation. The community owned solar array will provide energy assistance to 100 participating low-income White Earth Tribal households. Furthermore, the system will be built by community members trained and certified to enter the solar energy workforce, thereby fostering an inclusive clean energy workforce and ensuring that the benefits of the solar industry are equally accessible to low-income communities of color. If we are going to address climate change, we must include everyone in the solutions. CS4CA is a social service delivery model and training that is working to make solar more accessible to everyone.
Research or Economic Modeling
Measurement, Reporting & Validation