The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has released a series of articles and studies last month that look at the rise of solar energy in American K-12 schools. “There are now 5,489 K-12 schools in the United States that use solar energy, nearly double the total solar capacity that was installed at schools in 2014” say SEIA. The movement to solar is most likely due to the 67% reduction is cost in solar installations over the past 10 years. This reduction in installation cost is from the government tax and incentive programs that have encourage individuals, commercial businesses as well as government municipality to install solar panels. The Department of Energy’s Sunshot Initiative Program is one example of a federal initiative to reduce the cost of solar by 75% to make it a competitive source of energy in the market.
Urban spaces are full of rooftops with the capacity to host PV systems for solar energy collection. New York City has recently recognized this and in 2015, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced his goal of powering 100% of the city’s government buildings and operations with renewable energies. The plan on how to reach this goal has been developing for the past few years. New York City Public Housing Authority (NYCHA), one of the largest housing authorities in the nation, has a lot of rooftop space for solar and in 2017, a new goal was developed to “install 25 megawatts of solar panels atop the city's public housing buildings, enough capacity to power 6,600 households.” In January of 2018, the Housing Authority will start reviewing bids from companies to start the project.