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DOE selects Generac to provide vulnerable households with solar power

Generac Power Systems Inc., a manufacturer of energy technology solutions, announced that it has been selected by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) as one of several qualified vendors to enter award negotiations as part of an investment of up to $440 million from the Puerto Rico Energy Resilience Fund. The funding will support residential solar and battery storage systems for up to 40,000 Puerto Rican households, with installations potentially starting in spring.

The announcement marks a critical milestone in providing reliable electricity to Puerto Rico’s most vulnerable residents and represents the first round of selections from the 2023 PR-ERF Funding Opportunity Announcement. 

The project will deploy rooftop solar panels and battery storage systems to the homes of eligible residents to both help increase their energy resilience and decrease their energy burden. 

Generac and its project partners in Puerto Rico will help provide clean energy to low-income households, including those in areas where individuals with energy-dependent disabilities reside or those in low-income areas that experience frequent and prolonged power outages. 

The installations aim to improve household energy resilience for thousands of residents, the company said, adding that the funding will also create jobs and assist Puerto Rico in achieving its renewable energy goals.

“Generac has been a trusted provider of resiliency backup power since 1959, and we are honored to be a part of this important Department of Energy program to provide Puerto Rico’s most vulnerable communities with access to our clean energy sources,” said Aaron Jagdfeld, president and chief executive officer of Generac. “As the island continues to grapple with extreme weather events and aging energy infrastructure, Generac’s solar + battery storage solutions will help keep the power on while also helping to support job growth within the clean energy sector.”

Generac will work with local partners to support the program, including PosiGen, a leading U.S. residential solar and energy efficiency provider for low-to-moderate income homeowners. PosiGen’s Partner Program, which helps “value-aligned partners” offer its lease product, “has helped homeowners go solar since its inception in 2021,” the media release reads. FR-BLDM, a leading locally and minority-owned construction company, will lead installations, working with other local, small, family-owned businesses, the release added.

The company explained that Juapi Energy, its premiere PWRcell battery installer and Generac Service Dealer in Puerto Rico, will provide an “extra layer” of service support to residents. The Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC), a clean energy nonprofit established in 1982, and PathStone, a nonprofit providing community development and humanitarian services on the island since 1998, will lead workforce development efforts that focus on providing jobs for residents from vulnerable households, including those in last mile communities. In addition, IREC will coordinate other local nonprofits to serve as liaisons between Solar Ambassadors, installers and eligible recipients.

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