If you could live in a community where each one of your neighbors grew their own fresh vegetables and then each one of you shared your crop so to insure healthy living. Now replace those veggies with solar panels so that you are all producing and sharing energy for the benefit of all, you now have "Community Solar."
California is one of the fifteen states who has passed legislation to encourage the growth of shared solar. Much like your veggie garden, "solar gardens" are designed to collect sunlight and generate electricity. If you want to be part of this clean energy revolution, a "solar garden" might be a perfect solution for you and your neighbors.
How Community Works
As a "community solar" user, you system is usually located on a piece of land that may or may not be owned by one of your "solar neighbors."
The electricity that is generated typically costs less than the price you would pay to your utility. A community solar system operates under a variety of different ways. Either by ownership or by subscription. The billing system that makes this possible is called Virtual Net Metering or (VNM). Just as Net Metering is for rooftop solar, VNM is to community solar.
Using this system, homeowners receive the Net Metering credits associated with a renewable energy project even if they are not connected to its electricity meter. These credits will reduce their electricity usage because the credits are worth equal or nearly equal to the cost of electricity from the utility company. For example, if your share of a solar community 10 kWh of electricity, then it will reduce your usage by 10 kWh.
Who Benefits From Community Solar
Community solar works great for small businesses and homeowners who appreciate the financial and environmental benefits of solar without the hassle of maintaining their own system. In addition, community solar also provides a solution for individuals whose homes are unsuitable for solar due to shaded rooftops. In addition, community solar can also be a great option for renters or even multi-dwelling properties.
Financial Benefits of California Community Solar
The costs of community solar can vary depending on whether you want to use the ownership or subscription. In addition, some community solar properties allow you to sell Renewable Energy Certificates or (RECs). We encourage you to do your research regarding all your options so that you can make decisions you can have confidence in.
Going "Community Solar" is not always easy. It takes "teamwork" and neighbors coming together with a common goal to benefit everyone today and future generations. Below you will find tips that you can use to promote community solar in your neighborhood.
- Meet with your legislators and remind congress how much that the solar industry provides jobs, energy options and eco-friendly solutions that matter.
- Be an advocate for policies that promote and encourage community solar projects for multifamily buildings. This makes solar available for everyone.
- Know all of your solar options for California. For example, solar co-ops, solar gardens, utility-sponsored solar, and more.
- There are endless solar tools available online and community access channels.
- Communities can provide educational community outreach programs that explore financing options and community solar programs that are available throughout the state along with utility or regional initiatives.
- Encourage your local officials to provide electronic or over-the-counter review options for standard systems. This can reduce the time-consuming process of permit approvals.
- Encourage your city to cap total permit costs at a flat fee for standard residential systems.
- Communities can develop and provide clear and simple checklists of all requirements for solar installation and post them on their website.
- Designate a solar coordinator, a neighborhood representative who is responsible for outreach and internal coordination within departments.
- Be sure that you have an installer that is experienced in the solar industry such as Wing Solar & Wood Energy, Inc. We have remained a leader in the California solar energy industry for over 40 years.
We hope this page has answered some of your questions. We would like to invite you to continue your tour of our website. If you have further questions or would like to schedule a consultation with our client care specialist, please contact Wing Solar & Wood Energy, Inc. toll-free at 1-800-492-4061. For your convenience, you may also request more information from this site.
Thank you for your interest in Wing Solar & Wood Energy, Inc. We look forward to serving you in the near future.
*convenience fees apply.