Community Solar: Wave of the Suburban Future
Community solar installations are a powerful and effective way of simplifying the process of adopting renewable, affordable alternative energy systems. You and your neighbors can derive some great benefits from pooling your collective resources and buying power. Ultimately, determining whether this approach is right for you, your family and your community will depend on several key factors.
What is Community Solar?
People who live in a planned community or belong to a homeowners association may share an interest in saving money and reducing their dependence on municipal utility providers. Individual homeowners may not know where to start gathering information or finding answers to their questions. All across the country, neighbors and community members are joining forces to learn about solar energy and to increase their options and buying power. In Utah, communities are installing renewable energy systems encompassing several homes or entire streets or blocks at a time. When community members join together to pursue adopting renewable energy technology, the group can derive many significant benefits.
Benefits of Adopting Solar Technology as a Community
The process of adopting a solar energy system can be confusing and time consuming. When neighbors join together, they have the opportunity to learn about photovoltaic and other energy-producing technologies at the same time, pool their knowledge and receive answers to their questions. Cost is also a concern for many people, but a community’s buying power can be significant, providing bulk purchase discounts. Installation, when performed on a community basis, can facilitate the permitting and homeowners association approval process as well. If your HOA has not modified its design guidelines or CC&Rs to embrace alternative energy installation, petitioning the association as a group greatly improves the chances of a positive response.
Will a Community-Based Approach Benefit You?
Investigating and adopting solar power as a group offers many benefits and few drawbacks. The first step is to determine whether your neighbors are interested in learning more. Most solar providers can furnish you with educational materials that you can share with neighbors in your area for advice on mounting a community effort. Remember to contact your HOA or other local governing body to learn their process on submitting for approval. In many communities, independent nonprofit groups have formed specifically for the purpose of helping neighborhoods achieve energy independence, efficiency and significant cost savings that solar, wind and other renewable energy systems can provide.
Intermountain Wind and Solar, serving customers in Utah, Wyoming, Colorado, Nevada and Idaho, helps their customers end their dependence on public power providers in a highly cost-effective manner. Contact them today to learn more information about how community solar can benefit you.