There really is always something to celebrate.  Imagine my delight when I read this press release this a.m. about TEP’s award winning community solar efforts. TEP is honest about their challenges when it comes to renewables. What they do impacts our air, our water, our environment. And they try to do it better every day in every way they can.  I love to talk with Paul Bonavia about all of this on green talk radio because we cover the complicated issues in respectful, meaningful ways.   Sounds like another show coming up.  Kudos to TEP for their efforts and now their national recognition.

SEPA Announces 2012 Investor Owned

Utility of the Year Award

Washington, D.C. –

Yesterday, the Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA) named Tucson Electric Power (TEP) the 2012 Investor Owned Utility of the Year. The award was presented in conjunction with the Edison Electric Institute Annual Convention in Orlando, FL.

“Last year, solar energy was the nation’s fastest growing generation source in large part to utilities like Tucson Electric Power,” said Julia Hamm, SEPA President and CEO. “Through their first-of-a-kind community solar program to their storage and CSP initiatives, TEP has proven why it is deserving of the


Investor Owned Utility of the Year title. Their innovation and strong portfolio should serve as a model for other IOU’s on how to successfully embrace clean solar energy.”

In 2011, TEP became the first investor owned utility in the nation to launch a true community solar program, Bright Tucson, helping to make solar energy available and affordable for their customers. Through their strong partnerships with the University of Arizona (UA) and the Arizona Research Institute for Solar Energy (AzRISE), TEP helped increase the use of solar energy at the UA Science and Technology Park’s Solar Zone, where they also hope to make significant progress on solar storage solutions.

TEP was chosen as the winner from a field of  51 investor owned utility SEPA members, and is joined by finalists Duke Energy and Hawaiian Electric Company.


The Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA) is an educational non-profit dedicated to helping utilities integrate solar power into their energy portfolios. With more than 1,000 utility and solar industry members, SEPA provides unbiased utility solar market intelligence, up-to-date information about technologies and business models, and peer-to-peer interaction. From hosting national events to one-on-one counseling, SEPA helps utilities make smart solar decisions. For more information, visit