Community Solar Explained | Community Solar Hub

Community Solar Explained

Posted on Thursday December 1, 2016

Community Solar Hub - Community Solar Explained

Community solar programs are a great way to allow more people the ability to access solar energy. Multiple participants can either purchase panels or subscribe to a program and receive on-bill credits associated with the system’s production. Anyone with an electric bill can participate in a program, including residential, commercial, industrial, and non-profit customers of the participating utility.

Projects can be sponsored by utilities, third party developers, or non-profits. Energy produced by the array is delivered directly to the electric utility. A participant’s electric bill will be credited in relation to how much energy their share of the facility produces. It is possible that a customer’s electric bill can be reduced by 100% through solar energy from the array.

Community solar makes solar energy accessible to low-and moderate-income customers. This is possible due to several reasons.

  1. No rooftops - Community solar does not require rooftops, so home ownership is not necessary for participation.
  2. Zero down payments - Many programs allow participation through subscription, which commonly does not require participation fees.
  3. Philanthropic efforts – Project sponsors and corporate entities can donate portions to local housing authorities who can then designate production to low-income households. Ownership is transferable, allowing gifts of solar energy to those in need.  

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