Many families in the United States are unable to obtain solar because they rent their houses, live in multi-tenant buildings, or are unable to support a solar panel. For such homeowners, community solar is an excellent choice. It can provide homeowners, renters, and even companies fair access to solar energy. Furthermore, regardless of whether they own a home or a company, it offers them economic and environmental benefits.
Community solar can provide access to those with low or moderate incomes while also strengthening and resiliency of the electric system.
What is community solar?
When a local facility is shared by a municipal community, customers who receive credit on their electricity bills for their part of the power produced are referred to as community solar. It enables homeowners, renters, businesses, and others to earn a credit on their utility bills for the power generated by their portion of the solar farm, so balancing their electricity costs.
Community solar installations typically have fewer than five megawatts (MW) of electricity capacity and cover a range of acres. Community solar farms are often built on leased land, and you can restore well-designed systems to their previous condition.
What are the advantages of community solar?
There is no need to exert effort during the installation process
According to NREL estimates, 49 percent of the roof orientation in America is not appropriate for solar. Furthermore, there are several other concerns to consider, such as shading or structural failure. Furthermore, with community solar, you save the hassle of locating contractors and organizing the installation and permitting processes.
There is no up-front expense
You don’t have to buy the panels yourself because community solar agreements can provide you with a subscription. What you need to do is simpler. You should only subscribe to the power they generate at a lower rate than your utility supplier.
You can save money on your electricity expenses
Subscribers to community solar receive a direct reduction on their power costs, often ranging from 5 to 15 percent. The primary reason for this discount is the drop-in prices. However, state and federal subsidies, as well as price agreements between the solar provider and your utility, are crucial considerations.
The advantage of energy independence
By producing their own electricity, shared solar may give everyone the same benefits as rooftop solar. Both assist the United States in relying less on global energy markets, safeguarding us from volatile energy costs and supply interruptions.
Environmental advantages and pollution reduction
Solar energy helps to alleviate the environmental and human health risks posed by fossil fuels. Solar panels are ecologically sound and more sustainable since they emit no hazardous gases into the environment. Furthermore, because there are no moving elements in the system, there is no noise pollution.
CO2 emissions from fossil fuels are causing our world to warm at an alarming rate. However, the role of people in causing climate change cannot be overstated. As a result, community solar can also help with the climate change issue.
Community solar helps the local economy
The production of fossil fuels is extensively automated and requires less and less human involvement every day. Solar, on the other hand, needs the use of actual, living humans for design and installation. As a result, it can create more job possibilities. Solar, for example, employs more people than oil, coal, and natural gas combined, and the solar business created more than 100,000 jobs in the United States in 2016.
Community solar is free for anybody to participate, and you do not have to buy a solar panel on your own. While it can still be a good investment, like rooftop solar panels, you will not have to worry about cleaning, maintaining, or recycling solar panels because it is all handled by paid solar crews.
Read here: Exploring the Options for Small Solar Panels