This year five members of Congress will receive the SEIA Solar Champion Award from the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). In addition, it’s also awarding solar champion Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) with the first ever Lifetime Solar Pugilist Award.
Reid, according to SEIA, is the strongest advocate for solar that has ever served in Congress. “In his capacity as Senate Democratic Leader, Sen. Reid served as a key negotiator in securing both long-term extensions of the solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) in 2008 and 2015 and was the architect of the credit in 2005,” SEIA stated. It added, “Without Sen. Reid’s leadership and persistence, the solar industry would not have experienced its vast growth in recent years and the incredible growth to come. With his impending retirement, this first-ever Lifetime Solar Pugilist Award is truly meant as a commendation from a grateful industry in recognition of his long record of leadership in fighting for solar energy.”
In addition to Reid, SEIA is awarding Sens. Dean Heller (R-NV) and Michael Bennet (D-CO), and Reps. Tom Reid (R-NY) and Mike Thompson (D-CA). Each Senator or Representative receiving the award is being recognized for their efforts to increase the adoption of solar power in the US, including the extension of the ITC.
“Support for solar energy is support for American jobs and innovation,” said Tom Kimbis, SEIA’s interim president. “These five legislators have demonstrated through their leadership in the halls of Congress, their public support and their voting records that they recognize the enormous benefits—from national security to economic development—bestowed on our nation through solar energy. We credit them with recognizing that solar is not a partisan technology, thank them for their relentless support, and proudly present them with these well-deserved awards.”
While Reid led the charge, each of the four recipients of the Solar Champion Award worked hard to preserve and extend the ITC. Their efforts, according to SEIA, will help solar jobs more than double from 209,000 employees currently to 420,000 by the end of 2020. During that period the amount of solar power is expected to triple, reaching 100 gigawatts by 2020.Tweet