Georgia Finances Critical Energy Resilience in Local Facilities

Source: RL Martin

As leaders in energy resilience, State Energy Offices are proactively engaged in a number of innovative and critical efforts to mitigate hazards, and support local energy resilience.  Beginning in April 2020, the Georgia State Energy Office, within the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA), established a Solar Resiliency Technical Assistance Program to provide technical assistance and funding to local governments to improve resiliency at critical facilities using solar and battery backup technology. Nine Georgia communities participated in solar resiliency feasibility studies, and 10 communities will receive funding to support installations.

GEFA employed a phased approach with this project, utilizing online workshops to educate local governments about solar + storage resiliency hubs for critical infrastructure. Following the online outreach, GDS Associates (a NASEO affiliate), on behalf of GEFA, conducted feasibility studies at select local government critical facilities. Each feasibility study consisted of an assessment of critical loads, discussion of any obvious impediments to solar plus battery storage solutions, proposed solar resiliency solutions, technology recommendations, an economic analysis, an analysis of how the proposed system will work during a prolonged power outage, and other components.

Following the outreach and assessment GEFA offered local government entities reimbursements to incentivize the installation of solar PV and backup batteries at critical facilities. GEFA also created a solar resiliency toolkit to assist Georgia communities interested in solar resiliency. 

This project was supported through the use of U.S. Department of Energy State Energy Program (SEP) funding. Additional information on GEFA’s Solar Resiliency Technical Assistance Program and resources can be found here.