The warm and sunny city of San Antonio,Texas, has just been deemed a Solar America City by the U.S. Departmentof Energy, an announcement that came during the 2nd Solar AmericaCities Annual Meeting in the same city. Along with title, the city wasawarded with $200,000 in grant money in order to get the ball rollingon the Solar San Antonio 2015 project, which involves a solarinfrastructure for the city. But the good news for the San Antoniofolks doesn’t end there: the Energy Department will also providetechnical experts who will aid in energy planning, facilities andzoning through hands-on help.
Appropriately, the city is no strangerto solar. The San Antonio 2015 program aims to develop solar-friendlypolicies throughout the city in order to embrace solar power on alarger, more cohesive scale, and use it to power existing and newcity-owned buildings as well as build a solar energy system on cityproperty. Campaigns and rebate programs are in the works to reach localbusiness and residents in a plan to advocate the benefits andsensibility of solar power. Currently, San Antonio is home to thelargest solar energy installation in Texas with its plans to install a200 kw solar panel system on a building that harbors offices, retailspaces and residences, to the tune of $1.35 million.
San Antonio, and Texas, is getting fullsupport from environmental groups for its forward-thinking solarstrategies. In the Public Citizen Report published this past February,Texas Solar Roundup, it’s clear that the state’s ten year goal to moveto a solar-based renewable standard of a 4,000 megawatt capacity willspeed up rebate programs as well as produce fair buy-back prices forresident-made power. Presently, the state of Texas is making plans toeliminate 29 million tons of pollution, provide 22,000 solar industrymanufacturing and installation jobs and to stabilize energy prices.Knowing this, it’s no wonder that the city was selected as one of the25 cities included in the Solar America Cities.