Press Room

Welcome to the Press Room, where we share our work via articles, interviews, and press releases. Please check back regularly for updates and new information about our exciting projects!

Annual Reports

Recent Press Releases

Newsletters and Program Updates

Stay informed on local clean energy news by signing up for our bi-monthly e-newsletter (scroll to the bottom of this page to sign up). Recent newsletters can be found below:


Learn about the strides we’re taking toward a region powered by locally controlled clean energy through these stories.

Press Clips

September 2018

City of Yakima will consider easier way to buy solar panels

It may soon get easier and cheaper to purchase and install solar panels in Yakima. The city is exploring a possible partnership with Spark Northwest, a Seattle-based nonprofit that aims to expand affordable, locally controlled clean energy. The group already partners with the Yakima Valley Conference of Governments in south Yakima County and brought a proposal to the Yakima City Council because it wants to work with a municipality. The group also is working with Mercer Island and Issaquah. Read more here.

June 2018

University lands USDA grant for renewable energy development

George Fox University, a private Christian school based in Newberg, Ore., is reaching out to small farmers and vintners in the Willamette Valley after receiving a $100,000 Renewable Energy Development Assistance Grant from the USDA. Students and faculty in the university’s College of Engineering will use the grant to help agricultural producers become more energy efficient, conduct energy audits and consider renewable energy options on the farm or vineyard. The university is collaborating with Spark Northwest, a Seattle-based nonprofit organization dedicated to renewable energy development. Funding will be provided by the USDA over two years, beginning this fall. Read the full article here.

October 2017

Solar Energy Boosts Affordable Housing in Seattle
Affordable housing in Seattle just got a boost from the sun: Three Capitol Hill Housing properties, home to 147 low-income residents, will get rooftop solar power to generate their own electricity and reduce operating costs. With critical support from Seattle City Light’s Green Up Grant Program, the installations cap years of planning with Capitol Hill Housing by non-profit Spark Northwest (formerly Northwest SEED) and partner Emerald Cities Seattle. Read the full press release here.

June 2017

Northwest SEED Becomes Spark Northwest !

Northwest SEED announces a new name and look to reflect the organization’s longstanding commitment to expand the use of affordable, locally controlled clean energy. Read how the organization is partnering with six local governments to make solar cheaper, faster and easier to install.

Community Solar’s Promise May Go Unfulfilled

Can Oregon do more to create a robust community solar program? We think so. Hear from our Policy Manager on the current rulemaking process in this Portland Tribune article.

May 2017

Can Washington’s Solar Boom Survive the Legislative Stalemate?

Maria Dolan explores the solar industry in Washington State for this Seattle Magazine piece, citing Northwest SEED’s work in community solar.

February 17th, 2017

Energize Rogue Brings Discounted Heatpumps to Community

Energize Rogue has launched, bringing an incredible opportunity for residents and businesses in Josephine and Jackson counties to participate in a group purchase program for ductless heat pumps. Read the story here.

October 25th, 2016

Solarize U Eugene Donated Panels Installed

Solarize U Eugene solarized 80 homes, totaling 328 kilowatts of solar! The Eugene Solar Coalition and Platt Electric donated two 3.5kW solar electric systems for meeting our goal of 70 installations! One was awarded to the Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide (ELAW) and the other went to the Veteran’s Housing Project. The donations will help these non-profits save money on their electric bills while producing clean, renewable energy. To learn more about ELAW’s installation, check out this press release. The University of Oregon Sustainability Department shares the story here.

Solar Plus Awarded U.S. Department of Energy Grant

Solar Plus, a joint effort of more than a dozen stakeholder groups in Washington and Oregon has been awarded a $2,050,000 SunShot grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to further deployment of solar energy in the Pacific Northwest. It is the largest of the 17 awards totaling $21 million announced. Read the full press release, and learn more here.

Energize Rogue Launches!

September, 2016

Energize Rogue will increase energy efficiency installations in the Rogue Valley, stimulate business growth, enable residents to reduce their energy costs, and support environmental stewardship, with support from a USDA Rural Business Development Office grant. Read the full press release and learn more here.

Energize Klickitat Launches!

July, 2016

Energize Klickitat will support small and emerging business in Klickitat County through educational trainings and a renewable energy or energy efficiency technology group purchase campaign. This program is made possible by a Rural Business Development Grant (RBDG) awarded by the USDA Rural Development in Washington State. Read the full press release here.

A Future for WA Renewables

House Bill 2346 is currently under review by the Senate Ways and Means Committee, as Northwest SEED champions its progress to law. Jennifer Grove, Executive Director of Northwest SEED shares her thoughts on the bill, its potential, and the future of renewables in Washington. Read the full op-ed here.

Solar Power is in Woodinville’s Future

January 25th, 2015

The Woodinville Weekly reported on the launch of Solarize Woodinville, which kicks off on Thursday, January 28th at 21 Acres. The article highlights the benefits of Solarize campaigns, quoting the Woodinville City Council member and Northwest SEED partner Paula Waters as saying, “it takes a lot of the burden of research off an individual citizen.”  Read the full article here.

NW Energy Coalition Honors Jaimes Valdez

December, 2015

Northwest SEED Policy Manager, Jaimes Valdez, is honored as a rising clean energy star at NW Energy Coalition’s Awards Gala. Jaimes has been named one of the 4 Under Forty making an impact on clean energy in our region. The Awards Gala will be held on Thursday, December 3rd, and will feature four honorees who have demonstrated commitment to environmental action.

EPA Announces 2015 Environmental Justice Small Grant Awards

October 8th, 2015

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced nearly $1.2 million in competitive grants selected for award to 40 non-profit and tribal organizations working to address environmental justice issues nationwide. Northwest SEED is honored to receive funding for Renewable Energy Farm Walks, which seek to increase awareness and direct participation in renewable energy generation by agriculture producers. You can read more about the Northwest SEED proposal, and the other grant recipients here.

U.S. Department of Energy highlights Northwest SEED’s Rooftop Solar Challenge II

The Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy’s Community Solar Awards features the Rooftop Solar Challenge II.  Northwest SEED partners with the Washington State Department of Commerce and other environmental organizations to create a more vibrant regional solar market.

Washington Governor Inslee praises five “Solar Communities”

April 8, 2015

Leading the helm, Northwest SEED’s Northwest Solar Communities initiative has been recognized for increasing residential solar energy installations through reduced costs, streamlined permitting. Gov. Jay Inslee today proclaimed the cities of Bellevue, Edmonds, Kirkland, Mercer Island and Seattle “Northwest Solar Communities,” acknowledging their various initiatives that have increased residential solar installations by nearly 200% since 2013. Congrats!

Northwest SEED selected as 2014 Environmental Investee by SVP Seattle

June 23, 2014

Northwest SEED is delighted to report that we have been selected as the 2014 Environmental Investee by SVP Seattle. We are looking forward to starting work on this partnership, and expanding access to clean energy across the Pacific Northwest!

Bloom Seattle 9 featuring Linda Irvine from Northwest SEED

February 20, 2014

Linda Irvine, along with seven other innovative leaders in Seattle, spoke at the Bloom! Seattle event on her passion for sustainability, her work at Northwest SEED, and our Solarize Washington and HEATWISE programs.

Microsoft Office 365 for Nonprofits video featuring Northwest SEED

September 10, 2013

Northwest SEED, along with two other non-profits, received a donation of Microsoft’s Office 365 software and participated in a video about its launch, check it out here!: NWSEED & Microsoft O365. You can find more information about Microsoft’s donation program on their website or Facebook page.

Seattle Channel: CityStream Earth Day Special

April 22, 2013

Northwest SEED, Seattle City Light, and Solarize Seattle: Northwest participants discuss their experience with the Solarize Washington program.

Watch Now

Crosscut: Won’t You be my Solar-Panel-Buying Neighbor?

February 13, 2013

Northwest SEED’s Alex Sawyer talks to Crosscut about the Solarize Washington solar group purchase program, the latest campaign in Northwest Seattle, and available incentives for solar. The article includes an audio link as well!

Seattle Times: Solar Neighborhood Projects Shine in “Sunbreak” Seattle

February 2, 2013

Jennifer Grove, Seattle City Light, and volunteers from the Solarize Seattle: Northwest campaign discuss the campaign, the incentives, and City Light’s support for the project.

Read more

Press Releases

Community Organizations Selected for Free Solar Power Systems

September 11, 2013

Two local community organizations – Bike Works and Clean Greens Farm & Market – will receive a donated system to generate renewable energy for their facility if enough homes in central and southeast Seattle neighborhoods choose to install solar electric systems in the coming months.

Read more

Free Solar Power System to be Awarded to Qualifying Community Organizations

July 23, 2013

The Solarize Seattle: Central/Southeast Community Coalition is seeking applications from qualified community organizations who would like to have a donated solar photovoltaic system installed at their facility to generate renewable energy for the facility and to use as an educational tool.

Solarize Seattle: Central/Southeast is Now Open for Registration

July 8, 2013

Solar group purchase campaign for central and southeast Seattle Neighborhoods

Northwest SEED and Seattle City Light have launched a solar energy education and installation program that provides a streamlined process for residents and small businesses to purchase solar systems for a discounted price.

Working With You

Attend an Event

Spark Northwest provides educational events to community members to support renewable energy project development.

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Find More Resources

Spark Northwest provides publications, guidebooks and web tools that help communities pursue clean energy projects.