Iowa solar panel company says new law will benefit them

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Photo by start line staff

An Iowa-based solar panel maker sees a bright future for the growing industry thanks to the Cut Inflation Act.

Todd Miller, president of 1 Source Solar in Ankeny, said his company has projects in all 99 counties of Iowa, installing solar panels for residential and commercial buildings, including many farms.

“This legislation will also help bring more manufacturing back to the country and create energy independence for America through a safer and more reliable energy grid,” he said.

The Cut Inflation Act is a comprehensive bill aimed at combating climate change by strengthening American manufacturing capacity and infrastructure, reducing prices for health care, including for insulin and prescription drugs, and forcing businesses to pay taxes.

Democrats were the only ones to vote for it, including Representative Cindy Axne from Iowa’s 3rd congressional district.

Axne visited 1 Source Solar Thursday morning to hear from Miller and other community organizers about how the Cut Inflation Act will help Iowans.

“I’m so proud to say that I’m part of an organization and an administration that decided it was time to really get things done here in America,” Axne said. “And that starts with producing clean energy.”

She also welcomed the bipartisan infrastructure bill, passed in December 2021, with funding for projects already being rolled out.

“Together, these two laws have had an incredible impact. They will reduce our dependence on foreign energy sources, lower our energy costs and significantly strengthen the green economy across the country,” Axne said.

Miller told Axne that the company’s three manufacturing priorities are solar panels, batteries and inverters, the device that converts electricity into something the grid can use. Miller said that with these investments, his company can rely on American-made products for the long term.

Solar panel costs have come down, making it more affordable than ever, and the Curbing Inflation Act contains provisions to make it even more affordable. There are 30% tax credits for installing solar panels and making other improvements to improve energy efficiency. It also includes tax credits for community solar projects and tax credits for small business owners for installing solar panels.

According to the Environmental Council of Iowa, Iowa has the potential to generate enough solar energy to power half a billion homes a year and meet today’s electricity needs 150 times more.

Charlie Wishman, president of the Iowa Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, spoke about the high-quality jobs that will come from the Cut Inflation Act.

“We have to do something about climate change as a people, as a nation, as a world,” he said. “But if we’re going to do this, let’s make sure it’s not just better for the environment. But we have to make sure it’s also better for the workers.

The Inflation Reduction Act contains provisions that require new jobs to pay prevailing wages and there are incentives for unionized workers to be used. Iowa is getting $24 billion to boost clean energy production and another amount of money for domestic manufacturing.

Joe Henry, state political director for the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) hailed the bill’s economic benefits and health care coverage promises. Both are concerns for the Latino community, he said.

“In addition to helping families who are struggling financially due to inflation and the economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic, this bill takes unprecedented action to protect our planet and fight climate change,” Henry said. “This is a historic step toward a healthier, fairer, and more sustainable America. And we can’t wait to see the positive changes this will have on our Latino community across the United States.

“Iowans will see their energy bills reduced by about $200 each year thanks to the Cut Inflation Act. And we plan to create more than 900,000 well-paying jobs to reduce our carbon emissions. carbon, a total of around 40% compared to our 2005 baseline. We plan to reduce it by 40%,” Axne told the group.

“I think you heard earlier why this impact cannot be overstated,” she continued. “I mean, our children’s lives are at stake. This is the first time I’ve seen reports saying that, you know, we’re not going to make it or live as long as the generations before us, but we can put this on a different trajectory.

Nikoel Hytrek
08/09/22

Got a story idea or something I should know? Email me at nikoel@iowastartingline.com. You can also contact me by DM on Twitter at @n_hytrek.

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