Santa Barbara County
Designation Level: SolSmart Bronze
Year Designated: 2022
How can local governments integrate solar energy plans with their goals for community resilience? And how can they locate the financing to achieve these goals? A new SolSmart issue brief, prepared by the Regulatory Assistance Project, sets out to answer these questions.
The report features Santa Barbara County, where the combination of fire risk, aggressive local and state sustainability goals, and unique electric system challenges come together in projects that address a wide range of needs and access several financing sources.
- Created an online permitting checklist, increasing transparency for community members and solar installers
- Posted solar PV inspection requirements online, including the inspection process and what details inspectors will review
- Reviewed local zoning codes and identified restrictions that intentionally or unintentionally prohibit solar PV development
- Developed a solar PV assessment that identifies all feasible sites for large-scale solar PV development
- Provided residents with Community Choice Aggregation/Energy that includes solar PV as a power generation source