Today, U.S. Reps. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-09) and Mikie Sherill (D-NJ-11) introduced the Revamping Appropriate Incentives for Solar Energy for (RAISE) the Roof Act, which clarifies and expands the solar investment tax credit (ITC) to include integrated solar roofs. This move would maximize the positive climate and economic impacts of the next generation of solar energy technology. Senator Jon Ossoff (D-GA) introduced companion legislation in the Senate today.
“As the threat of climate change grows, we have no choice but to use every tool in our toolbox to combat it and encourage clean energy solutions,” said Rep. Pascrell, New Jersey’s only member of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee.“Solar roofing is one of the most promising and easily accessible avenues to reaching our climate goals. By expanding the Investment Tax Credit to include solar roofing technologies, this innovative legislation will help grow the solar industry and better encourage individual Americans to join the fight against climate change.”
“If we want to take meaningful action towards addressing the climate crisis, the future must be powered by clean energy. Solar energy is a great alternative that needs to be made more accessible to more Americans. The RAISE the Roof Act does just that.” said Rep. Sherrill. “Clarifying and expanding the ITC to include new integrated solar roofing technology will make solar adoption easier and more available to more American families. There is a unique opportunity in front of us to grow our clean energy sector, create jobs here at home, and make it easier for consumers to access renewables like solar — all while fueling our recovery from the economic crisis caused by the pandemic. We’ve already seen the incredible impact the solar ITC has had on our clean energy economy since it was implemented 15 years ago. This legislation will only bolster that growth and incentivize the expansion of the clean energy sector, here in New Jersey and across the country.”
“This bill will make it more affordable for all Americans to install rooftop solar panels, saving them money on their electric bills and boosting renewable energy production nationwide,” said Sen. Ossoff. “I will continue leading Senate efforts to scale up renewable energy production.”
Currently, only the most traditional, large scale solar panels qualify for the investment tax credit and new innovations like solar integrated roofing products are not covered. This outdated gap in the tax code makes it hard for manufacturers to accurately price the installation of a solar integrated roof for consumers and forces roofers and homeowners to delineate what part of a highly integrated job would apply for the credit. The RAISE the Roof Act solves this problem by allowing the entirety of an integrated solar roof to be covered by the investment tax credit and eliminating confusions and red tape that currently exist. It also would allow consumers to expense roof repairs and replacement that is sometimes necessary for solar installation.
“We see tremendous opportunity in roofs as real estate to drive the acceleration of clean energy,” said Martin DeBono, President GAF Energy. “This bill positions existing American manufacturing resources and know-how to contribute meaningfully to a resilient path forward in our energy infrastructure.”
“We need millions of new solar installations to decarbonize the economy, and that starts with equal tax treatment for solar built on new home construction, manufactured homes, and existing homes,” said Abigail Ross Hopper, president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). “This legislation will make sure that homes that have solar built into the original design are eligible for the same ITC benefits as any other residential solar installation and will extend the cost-saving benefits of solar energy to all Americans. We’re pleased to support this bill.”
This legislation has also been endorsed or supported by the Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association, Mosaic, Vote Solar, Greenwork, and Professor Daniel Kammen, Chair of the Energy and Resources Group at the University of California, Berkeley and a James and Katherine Lau Distinguished Professor of Sustainability.
Congress created the solar ITC in 2006 to spur solar energy growth in America and drive economic gains through the creation of new, clean manufacturing and construction jobs. As a result, the solar industry grew by 10,000% and added hundreds of thousands of well-paying jobs to the US economy.