Becoming a Northwest Solar Community

Making solar simple and cost effective means tackling tough roadblocks that can hamper the process. Cities and utilities are uniquely poised to address some of the most pressing barriers, including permitting, interconnection and net metering, financing, and planning.

With support from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Sunshot InitiativeRooftop Solar Challenge, a coalition of jurisdictions, utilities, industry partners and citizen groups formed Northwest Solar Communities in 2013. Since then, Northwest Solar Communities has worked in Oregon and Washington to reduce the “soft costs” of going solar by:

  • Standardizing the permitting and interconnection processes.
  • Creating business certainty for solar PV deployment across a broad area.
  • Facilitating the adoption of solar financing options to make solar energy affordable for all.

While detailed information on the best practices and resources developed by Northwest Solar Communities can be accessed on the program’s website,, we have also compiled much on the information related to permitting, interconnection and net metering, financing, and planning & zoning on our website: