This fall, the City of Hartford was recognized as a national leader by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for solar energy growth and advancement. Connecticut’s capital city was one of only 14 municipalities nationwide to receive a Gold designation from the DOE’s SolSmart program. SolSmart, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative, is a national recognition and a no-cost technical assistance program for local governments designed to drive greater solar deployment.
Several steps have been taken this year to promote clean energy production and development in Hartford. In January 2016, the city’s zoning code was overhauled to allow for solar energy in all zoning districts. In the spring, PosiGen and the Connecticut Green Bank announced that its “Solar for All” program, bringing solar to low-income and moderate-income property owners, would be coming to Hartford. And recently, Hartford’s Court of Common Council passed an ordinance – submitted and signed by Mayor Bronin – that established an Energy Improvement District (EID), helping the city to manage local energy projects. Also, the Climate Stewardship Council was launched to undertake long-range planning for sustainable energy initiatives, including solar.