Sustainable Energy Action Committee

Led by IREC, the Sustainable Energy Action Committee (SEAC) provides a forum for stakeholders to address code enforcement and permitting for sustainable energy systems.

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The Sustainable Energy Action Committee (SEAC) brings together authorities having jurisdiction (AHJs)—such as local building and fire departments, contractors, manufacturers, suppliers, utilities, testing labs, and other clean energy stakeholders. It is a forum for collaboration and problem solving related to solar PV installation and energy storage projects. 

From 2015 to early 2020, SEAC was a California-based initiative. Starting in spring 2020, SEAC has expanded into a national forum led by IREC with the support of a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy. Under this three-year grant, SEAC leads a consensus process to identify and develop solutions to code enforcement and permitting challenges.

Other key partners on this project include the International Association of Electrical Inspectors (IAEI), International Code Council (ICC), UL LLC, International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF), National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM), Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), U.S. Energy Storage Association (ESA) and California Solar & Storage Association (CALSSA).  

The project will develop consensus-based solutions to high-priority codes and standards needs. We will conduct an analysis to determine the gaps in understanding and implementation that complicate code enforcement and can deter clean energy deployment. A consensus process will then be used to develop solutions. 

Clear and comprehensive procedures defining permitting, inspection, and other requirements for solar and solar-plus-storage projects are essential to ensure the safety and quality of installed systems. By identifying and addressing unmet needs in this area, the project will advance public safety objectives.

In addition, by facilitating awareness and adoption of codes and standards best practices, the project will help reduce the non-hardware “soft costs” of solar and energy storage, thus supporting greater adoption. This will complement the work of the IREC-led SolSmart program, which provides no-cost technical assistance to help reduce soft costs at the local level.

Our Work

SEAC members and partners are experts in the sustainable energy industry. Through inclusivity, collaboration, and open and honest communication, SEAC produces recommended practices and information for the benefit of all in the sustainable energy industry.

Larry Sherwood

IREC President/CEO
“With over 20,000 local jurisdictions in the U.S. that issue permits and inspect PV systems, a consensus-based process to enhance related codes and standards is a powerful opportunity to facilitate greater deployment of solar and energy storage.”

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