Southeast Sustainability Directors Network (SSDN) Members Awarded Over $250 Million in Solar For All Grants to Expand Renewable Energy Access Across the Southeast

In honor of this year's Earth Day, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the launch of the $7 billion Solar for All Grants program, awarding a total of 60 recipients across the nation. Among these, over $750 million has been allocated to Southeastern states, including Arkansas, Georgia, North Carolina, Florida, Tennessee, and South Carolina. The Southeast Sustainability Directors Network (SSDN) played a direct role in supporting grant awardees in Georgia and Arkansas, highlighting its dedication to advancing sustainable energy solutions and ensuring equitable access to solar resources across the Southeast.

SSDN played a pivotal role in supporting the Georgia BRIGHT Communities Coalition’s application, which was led by the Community Development Financial Institution Capital Good Fund in coalition with the cities of Savannah, Atlanta, and Decatur. The Coalition’s application secured a significant award of $156,010,000 and garnered recognition from the Biden-Harris administration for its recent success in residential engagement. SSDN provided grant narrative support and offered strategic policy guidance, contributing to the program's success in advancing renewable energy and community well-being. In addition to supporting the expansion of the BRIGHT leasing program, which launched in September of 2023, the coalition’s award will provide financing support to utilities to facilitate low-income-focused community solar programs, create a free “direct install” solar program for the most vulnerable households, and support “Community Benefit” solar projects at essential community facilities that agree to re-invest their realized savings in expanded services or other community benefits. 

“This is a once-in-a-generation investment in equitable clean energy,” said Alicia Brown, Interim Director of Sustainability for the City of Savannah. “We are so thankful to the EPA for taking a chance on our community-centered vision and we look forward to getting these resources into communities who so desperately need lower energy bills, new economic opportunities, and increased resilience against outages.”

In Arkansas, SSDN provided funding to support the Arkansas Advanced Energy Association, led by Hope Enterprise Corporation, in developing its grant narrative. This collaboration has resulted in a significant award that will advance residential rooftop solar and storage, multi-family behind-the-meter solar projects, and financing for community solar initiatives.

"We are deeply appreciative of SSDN’s invaluable support, which was instrumental in enabling a final submission for this transformative opportunity,” said Lauren Waldrip of the Arkansas Advanced Energy Association. "With SSDN's assistance and the leadership of Hope Enterprise Corporation as the primary applicant, we are encouraged by the potential for this program to serve low-income Arkansans. The $93,670,000 grant award will play a pivotal role in expanding access to renewable energy through residential rooftop solar, multi-family behind-the-meter solar projects, and community solar financing initiatives across Arkansas.”

In addition to Solar For All grants directly supported by SSDN, they supported several state-wide efforts led by the South Carolina Office of Resilience (SCOR), Virginia Energy, North Carolina Clean Energy Fund (NCCEF), and the Florida SUN initiative, collecting letters of support from municipal and county member governments, promoting attendance at outreach events, and fostering community involvement in clean energy solutions. 

SSDN is committed to advancing sustainability and promoting clean energy adoption in the Southeast region. Through strategic partnerships, SSDN continues to foster collaboration among stakeholders and empowers communities to embrace renewable energy solutions. 

For more information about SSDN and its initiatives, including the Local Infrastructure Hub, please visit:

Southeast Sustainability Directors Network |