Friday, June 23, 2017

Solar Energy Industries Association announces new board of directors members

The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) recently announced several new members to its board of directors, with intentions to continue advocating and educating the public about solar energy and building a strong solar industry to power America.

“Solar is now the fastest-growing source of energy in the United States, and as the voice of the solar industry, SEIA is proud to have a board of directors with vast expertise that covers all aspects of the industry,” Alex Hobson, SEIA press officer and communications manager, told EP News Wire.

Among the new members is Mortenson Construction, one of the largest construction firms in the country. The firm’s senior vice president, Jim Yowan, will serve as a director.

SEIA is a nonprofit organization established in 1974 and is the national trade association for the U.S. solar energy industry.

“As the national trade association representing the solar industry, we work with our 1,000 member companies to champion the use of clean, affordable, solar energy in America by expanding markets, removing market barriers, strengthening the industry and educating the public on the benefits of solar,” Hobson said.

According to a statement issued by SEIA, the association held a board meeting in Austin, Texas where membership at-large voted on industry leaders to serve on the board of directors.

New members include: Mike Hall, CEO of Borrego Solar Systems; Yuri Horwitz, CEO of Sol Systems; Laura Stern, co-founder and president of Nautilus Solar Energy, LLC; Andrew Savage, chief strategy officer at AllEarth Renewables; and Jeff Wolfe, senior vice president of business strategy at Just Energy. Elected alternates are Barry Cinnamon, CEO of Spice Solar, and Chris Diaz, senior vice president at Seminole Financial Services.

“Our member companies consist of installers, project developers, manufacturers, contractors, financiers and non-profits — all of whom see the benefit in joining SEIA and working collectively toward a clean energy future,” Hobson said.

SEIA’s main federal priority is to get the solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) extended.

As part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (P.L. 109-58), a 30 percent ITC was offered for individuals and businesses that added qualified solar power systems. The tax credit was extended to Dec. 31, 2007 with the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006 (P.L. 109-432).

In 2008, Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-343) included a continuation of the tax credit for eight years.

The current ITC is set to expire on Dec. 31, 2016, and Hobson said many jobs are at risk.

“Unless Congress takes action, the ITC is set to drop from 30 percent to 10 percent for commercial systems and zero for residential systems at the end of 2016,” Hobson said. “Without the ITC, research shows the good-paying jobs of more than 100,000 Americans and thousands of U.S. companies — many of them small businesses — are at risk.”

According to the Solar Foundation’s national solar job census, close to 174,000 Americans were employed by the solar industry in 2014, growing 20 times faster than the overall economy.

“SEIA will not rest until Congress fully understands the importance of this critical policy,” Hobson said.

In addition, SEIA is working to remove statewide barriers that inhibit the growth of solar.

Organizations in this story

Solar Energy Industries Association 600 14th Street Northwest Washington, DC 20005

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