What is Community Shared Solar?

by Olivia Collins on August 21, 2013

As the price of solar panels drops, the option of Community Shared Solar is developing as a solution to a drawback to deployment of the technology: the inability or unwillingness of individuals and businesses to install and maintain solar panels on their own property. Only about 25 percent of American residences roofs are suitable hosts for solar panels for size, shape, and sun exposure reasons.

Shared Solar offers a technical solution that is installed offsite and also less expensive and more efficient than small, privately owned solar systems. Shared solar systems offer many benefits to multiple participants that include power, net-metering credits, and a return on the investment. Community shared solar puts added emphasis on appropriate siting, minimizing the costs to non-participants, and contributing to rate stability or long-term savings for participants. Hosted by a single entity, in one location with suitable roof or land space, community shared solar is supported by individuals who invest in the project or purchase electricity or net metering credits. Utility involvement also allows the power companies to have more control over where solar projects are strategically sited, and to retain revenues while meeting environmental and renewable energy goals – creating a rare win-win-win proposition for utilities, consumers, and communities at large.

Join solar experts from Gehrlicher Solar America,  Millennium Energy LLC, JK Cliburn & Associates and The Cadmus Group in the Security and Sustainability’s September 4th webinar discussing how shared solar works, the various management and financing options, pitfalls and examples of its successful application. As a primer for the webinar we recommend the recent Cadmus report on Community Shared Solar prepared for the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources.  It explores recommendations and opportunities for Community Shared Solar in the state of Massachusetts and serves as a starting point for understanding the planning, challenges, and policy behind community solar.

Please join the Security & Sustainability Forum from 1:15 – 2:45 pm on Wednesday, September 4 for a free 90 minute webinar on Community Shared Solar and Urban Neighborhoods.

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Bela April 5, 2015 at 11:27 pm

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