SolSmart Designees


North Carolina
SolSmart Gold
Population: 92,870
Designation Level: SolSmart Gold
Year Designated: 2018

Asheville has established a goal to transition municipal operations to 100 percent renewable energy by 2030 and has also supported Buncombe County’s community-wide 100% renewable energy goal. To help meet this target, SolSmart worked with Asheville city staff to better integrate solar into the local ordinances and increase efficiency with solar permitting, inspection, and fire safety processes. This builds on the city’s previous accomplishments including a solar group purchasing program in 2013, Solarize Asheville, which resulted in 80 installations.

This designation demonstrates the City’s commitment to support a clean energy economy and transition to a clean energy future, which is one of the goals of the Energy Innovation Task Force. In an environment where state law restricts the financing mechanisms for renewable energy it is important that the City does what it can to remove barriers and costs to such installations. The SolSmart designation comes at an opportune time as state regulators recently approved Duke Energy’s solar energy rebate program.
- Bridget Herring, Energy Program Coordinator for the City’s Office of Sustainability