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Tanya M. Larrabee quoted in Solar Builder magazine on the opportunities and challenges for low-income communities in the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA)

December 12, 2022

Tanya M. Larrabee, associate in the firm’s Real Estate Department and Renewable Energy Practice Group, was quoted in Solar Builder magazine on the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) and clean energy projects in low-income communities. The article, “How the IRA will help install solar in low-income communities – and how it falls short,” discusses the opportunities and challenges in the IRA for low-income communities.  The IRA solidifies a cleaner energy future for the United States, providing certainty for the solar and energy storage industries, with a 10-year extension of the 30 percent investment tax credit (ITC).

Read the full article from Solar Builder magazine.

From the article:

One sticking point, at least in terms of creativity in developing projects that benefit both corporate entities and low-income communities, is the ability to transfer RECs, notes renewable energy attorney Tanya Larrabee of Boston law firm Sherin and Lodgen. “Now that we have more incentives for these projects being built, more RECs are being generated. If companies are valuing them with corporate PPAs, how are those handled across state lines?”

Drilling down into communities further, how do municipalities zone solar? Will that match up with the low-income community or EJ incentives in the IRA? “Those are great things, but sometimes it comes down to local cities and towns and how they want to move forward,” Larrabee says.

“That can be a struggle, but a docket in Massachusetts would allow for a review of aggregating these costs across developers, ratepayers and utilities,” Larrabee says. “The infrastructure is old and not necessarily meant to move large GWs of power between states. To really get efficient with the different energies available across the nation, there’s a need for states, federal government and FERC to get creative because it’s not sustainable for developers to pay for all of these upgrades and costs while trying to build the infrastructure.”