By Forrest Watkins
What will it take to bring renewable energy to every American? We believe that this is one of the most important questions facing our country today.
A solar array is installed in America every two minutes, driving energy savings to American families and allowing them to participate in the renewable energy revolution.
Still, 80 percent of us can’t install rooftop solar--and there’s no single cause. There are plenty of people that have considered installing solar on their homes, but have discovered that for whatever reason--trees shading their home, a poor rooftop orientation, or structural problems--they can’t. Others have trouble paying upfront materials and installation costs, or don’t have the right FICO score to participate in solar financing programs. Renters, including young people, have little control over their building’s solar status.
Solstice was founded on the belief that community solar can address these obstacles and bring solar to every American. With community solar, residents subscribe to a shared solar farm in their area and receive instant savings on their utility bill.
This should open solar access to every bill-paying customer, but that’s not the case--yet. Risk-averse solar financiers currently require contracts to be modeled after rooftop solar, with 20 year contract lengths and a high credit score requirement.
We’ve already helped fill several community solar gardens with households that can meet these terms, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to put up our heels. We’re pushing developers to offer renter-friendly contracts, and we’re working to develop an alternate qualifying metric that will bring savings to those who need it most: low- and middle-income Americans.
People have long asked what it will take for people to act on climate change. We believe that given the opportunity, everyday Americans will take part in the renewable energy revolution--so we make it our job to give them that opportunity.
Solstice is solar for all.