180 Households Now Receiving Bill Savings from Barre, MA Community Solar Garden

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Community Energy Logo.jpg
 

Solstice Contact:

Forrest Watkins

(541) 600-0406

forrest@solstice.us

www.solstice.us

Community Energy Contact:

Jay Carlis

610-230-0378

jay.carlis@communityenergyinc.com

www.communityenergyinc.com

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 13, 2018

180 Households Now Receiving Bill Savings from Barre, MA Community Solar Garden

Barre, MA - Today, Solstice announced that only 20 spots remain in a set of Barre, MA solar gardens, giving Worcester County households the chance to support local, clean energy and save on their electricity costs. The projects, which together total 2 megawatts (MW) of production capacity, were built by Community Energy, Inc., a renewable energy developer that has built nearly 700 MW of solar capacity in its nearly two decades of experience.

Community solar is a model for residential solar that allows households to enroll in a local shared solar array and see savings on their electricity costs. Because community solar requires no changes to a participant’s property, the projects are open to households regardless of homeownership status or residents’ ability to find financing for their array. According to industry analyst GTM Research, community solar was the fastest-growing sector of the solar industry in 2017, and is now available in states across the nation.

The Barre community solar projects are already active and distributing energy bill credits to project participants in Worcester County, bringing them a fixed 10 percent discount on the energy that their allocation generates. Residents of select central and western Massachusetts counties are also eligible.

The three co-located projects occupy a 14-acre parcel of retired farmland and will serve approximately two hundred area households. A portion of the projects are being allocated to a local corporation with headquarters in Western Massachusetts, contributing to their corporate sustainability goals.

On top of benefits to its subscribers, the projects have brought new construction jobs to the area, as well as work for local residents attending to ongoing operations and maintenance needs. The projects will also protect the land where they are located and provide significant tax revenues to the Town of Barre over a 20-year period.

“This is a great opportunity for people to save on their energy costs, even as they support clean energy right here in central Massachusetts,” said Solstice Co-Founder & CEO, Steph Speirs. “We’re excited to be working with Community Energy to maximize these projects’ positive impact in our community.”

“We are excited to add the Barre Solar project to our growing base of operating community solar projects,” said Jay Carlis, Executive Vice President of Community Energy Solar. “A couple hundred Massachusetts residents have already reduced their energy costs by subscribing to the Barre Solar Project. We are looking forward to working with Solstice to offer the last few available spaces in the project.”

About Solstice

Solstice is dedicated to bringing affordable solar power to the 80% of Americans who cannot install a rooftop system. Solstice offers customer-facing solutions for the community solar industry, enrolling households and community organizations, creating financing innovations that expand access to underserved Americans, and providing a frictionless subscriber management platform for community solar projects. To learn more, please visit solstice.us.

About Community Energy Solar

Community Energy Solar has been a leader in renewable energy supply and development since 1999. Along with over 700MW of wind power, it has developed over 700MW of solar power, including five of the largest projects east of the Rockies. Community Energy’s operating community solar projects include two solar gardens in Massachusetts, four projects in Colorado, and four projects in Minnesota. By the end of 2018, Community Energy expects to have developed more than 30 MW of community solar gardens. Community Energy’s solar expertise and strong local relationships mean that the company is in the forefront of new solar development, working to create win-win solutions with commercial and residential customers to build new, local clean energy. To learn more, please visit communityenergyinc.com

“Multiply Solar” Team to Bring Community Solar to NYC Public Housing

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Solstice Contact:

Forrest Watkins

(541) 600-0406

forrest@solstice.us

www.solstice.us

Bright Power Contact:

Betsy Harbison

(646) 565-4166

bharbison@brightpower.com

www.brightpower.com

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 16, 2018

“Multiply Solar” Team to Bring Community Solar to NYC Public Housing

Solstice, Bright Power, Sol Purpose, Green City Force, and SolarOne will design, install, and manage community solar installations on 27 rooftops and parking lots at two developments, the first on NYCHA housing.

This program will provide clean, low-cost energy to low-to-moderate income residents throughout the city.

NEW YORK – Multiply Solar, a partnership of Bright Power, Inc., Solstice Power Technologies, Inc., Sol Purpose Development Company, Green City Force, and Solar One, announced today its intent to construct, subscribe, and manage community solar installations at 27 sites on two New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) developments. The solar arrays, the first installed on NYCHA buildings, will bring renewable energy to low- and moderate-income residents, providing them with estimated savings of between 10 and 20 percent compared to ConEd rates.

Located on roofs of buildings at 27 Queensbridge North and Queensbridge South, the installations will provide 2 megawatts of solar capacity—the first step in fulfilling NYCHA’s commitment of installing 25 megawatts of solar by 2025 (this represents the largest such commitment by a residential landlord in the country). As a condition of the agreement, the project will bring discounted solar energy to low-income households, and provide jobs to NYCHA residents.

Bright Power, a local firm with extensive experience developing solar on multifamily affordable housing in New York City, will design and install the solar arrays, while Solstice, a Cambridge- and New York-based community solar organization, will manage community outreach, subscriber qualification, and enrollment. Sol Purpose will act as project developer and will provide financing for the projects. AmeriCorps green jobs training program Green City Force will collaborate with NYC green energy education center Solar One to lead the workforce development aspect of these projects.

Set to begin construction in 2019, the installations will operate under a model known as community solar, allowing area households to enroll in the solar farm and see savings on their electricity bill. The installations will be available to residents from around the local ConEd service territory, but Solstice representatives say that they intend to primarily serve residents of NYCHA housing.

“Solstice was founded to make affordable, clean energy available to underserved communities,” Said Solstice Co-Founder and CEO, Steph Speirs. “Low-income communities pay a higher portion of their monthly income for energy, and will benefit the most from electric bill savings. We’re excited to be working with NYCHA, Bright Power, Sol Purpose, Green City Force, and Solar One to ensure that residents of these communities are able to gain access.”

To ensure that low-income households are able to participate, the project will employ Solstice’s EnergyScore qualification metric. This metric is intended to replace FICO credit scores as a means of qualifying households for community solar, and is projected to be both more accurate than FICO in predicting community solar subscriber payment behavior, and more inclusive of LMI households.

Solstice estimates that they will enroll 100 low-income households in the projects, including NYCHA residents and NYCHA Section 8 voucher holders who pay their own electric bills.

Aside from renewable energy and bill savings, the projects will bring other benefits to the community. The project will pay NYCHA a yearly lease of $65,596.80 over 20 years, for a total of $1.3 million, with revenues directly benefiting residents of installation sites. Bright Power and Solstice will create 10 new solar installer jobs and two community outreach and enrollment positions for NYCHA residents who are current Corps members or alumni of Green City Force's program.

“Bright Power is excited to be partnering with Sol Purpose, Solstice, Green City Force, and Solar One to deliver an exciting win-win-win-win for NYCHA, its residents and the planet, providing clean solar power, good jobs, revenue for NYCHA and lower electricity rates through this innovative community solar model,” said Jeffrey Perlman, Bright Power President & Founder.

“As NYCHA continues to implement its Sustainability Agenda, we will generate critical revenue, improve our residents’ quality of life, and protect NYCHA’s future for generations to come,” said former NYCHA Chair and CEO Shola Olatoye. “These solar partners are a great example of how NextGeneration NYCHA is connecting residents to critical economic opportunities through effective partnerships.”

“There is no issue more pressing today than saving our atmosphere and planet. That’s why I’m excited about this opportunity to help transform the energy grids of neighborhoods close to home that are too often neglected,” said Manhattan NYCHA Resident Pedro Castillo, a Bright Power Installation & Construction Team Member. “The sun powers our entire solar system, and soon it’ll power NYCHA and the whole world. Energizing our world, while providing green construction job opportunities for NYCHA residents is exactly what is needed! The economy will certainly be better off for it. Hopefully, this is a sign of greater things yet to come.”

About Bright Power

Bright Power provides strategic energy solutions to building owners and operators across the nation. Specializing in multifamily apartment buildings, Bright Power’s suite of services saves clients energy, money and time. Bright Power's energy management solutions include EnergyScoreCards benchmarking software, energy audits, energy procurement, onsite generation, green building design services, turnkey installation of energy improvements, and ongoing energy management. For more information, please visit http://www.brightpower.com.

About Solstice

Solstice is dedicated to bringing affordable solar power to the 80% of Americans who cannot install a rooftop system. Solstice offers customer-facing solutions for the community solar industry, enrolling households and community organizations, creating financing innovations that expand access to underserved Americans, and providing a frictionless subscriber management platform for community solar projects. To learn more, please visit http://solstice.us.

MassCEC Invests in Solstice

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MassCEC Contact:
Catherine Williams
(617) 315-9386
cwilliams@masscec.com
masscec.com

Solstice Contact:
Forrest Watkins
(541) 600-0406
forrest@solstice.us
www.solstice.us

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 2, 2018

The Massachusetts Clean Energy Commission (MassCEC), announced today a $50,000 investment in Solstice under its AccelerateMass program.

Solstice is a Cambridge-based social enterprise that uses community solar—a model which allows people to enroll in a local solar farm and see savings on their electric bill—to expand clean energy access in America. MassCEC’s investment in Solstice was targeted to help scale the company’s online software platform, which acts as a central hub for education and enrollment in community solar projects around the country.

“We’re grateful for MassCEC’s investment,” said Solstice CEO Steph Speirs, “And we’re looking forward to implementing this exciting technology to help bring solar to more American communities.”

AccelerateMass is a state program designed to support early-stage Massachusetts cleantech companies as they develop and implement technological breakthroughs that help the Commonwealth meet its climate and environmental goals. Solstice was one of four companies selected from this cycle's record-breaking pool of applicants.

Said Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito, “The startup community is a key driver for the Massachusetts economy and these investments will help four young companies grow and create quality jobs right here in the Commonwealth.”

About Solstice
Solstice is a mission-driven organization dedicated to bringing affordable solar power to the 80% of Americans who cannot install a rooftop system. Solstice provides customer-facing solutions for the community solar industry, carrying out comprehensive enrollment campaigns, partnering with organizations to distribute community solar to their membership, and providing a frictionless subscriber management and billing platform for community solar projects. To learn more, contact Forrest Watkins at (541) 600-0406 or forrest@solstice.us.
 

New Community Solar Projects Break Ground in Central New York

Delaware River Solar Contact:
Daniel Green
(646) 998-6493
dan.green@delawareriversolar.com
delawareriversolar.com

Solstice Contact:
Forrest Watkins
(541) 600-0406
forrest@solstice.us
www.solstice.us

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 6, 2017

 

Three Southern Tier community solar farms offer New Yorkers a better way to save on their electric bills.

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Baldwin, NY – This week marks the first for households and small businesses in Central New York and the state’s Southern Tier to enroll for a community solar subscription with a new, more customer-friendly contract. Three projects, each composing 2.7 megawatts in DC production capacity, are owned by local developer Delaware River Solar (DRS). Solstice, a non-profit that supports community solar access, has initiated a campaign to enroll customers in eligible areas.

Community solar allows residents and business owners to subscribe to the solar energy generated by a nearby solar farm. Customers’ electric bills go to support local, renewable energy, and they pay a discounted rate for the energy that their panels produce. This system circumvents upfront installation costs while saving the customer money in real time and bringing the state closer to reaching its renewable energy goals. Subscriptions are available to locals of Central New York and the Southern Tier, including the cities of Ithaca, Elmira, and Binghamton.

“Delaware River Solar is providing residents and businesses the opportunity to directly participate in a local renewable energy resource while saving money, so no doubt we’re excited,” said Dan Green of DRS. “This is a win-win for project participants, local communities, and the environment.”

Compared to typical projects in the state, these community solar farms offer a more customer-friendly contract. Delaware River Solar is offering a subscription rate 10% beneath that of the utility, with a shorter six-year term compared to the lengthy twenty-year commitments offered by many other community solar providers. Moreover, the project has no cancellation fees, giving subscribers added flexibility. For those that prefer an ownership model, DRS offers households the option to purchase panels upfront, bringing them benefits for the lifetime of the panels while allowing them to take advantage of tax credits.

Solstice CEO Steph Speirs anticipates the program to be a success. “These are the most customer-friendly projects we’ve offered,” she said. “We’re thrilled to be working with DRS to get solar in the hands of more New Yorkers.”

Each project occupies an 11-acre parcel of former farmland and will serve approximately four hundred households. Two are located near Baldwin’s Chemung Road, while a third lies further north, on Podunk Road in Enfield. On top of benefits to its subscribers, the projects will bring 37 jobs to the area during its construction, protect 14 acres of land for future use, and provide approximately $390,000 in additional revenues to the county, town, and school district over a 20-year period.

Interested individuals can learn more and enroll at ny.solstice.us.

About Delaware River Solar

Delaware River Solar develops, builds, and operates community solar projects throughout New York State. Their mission is to expand solar energy to those that cannot or prefer not to host solar on their own property and to contribute to the state’s bold energy and climate goals. Delaware River Solar works with local landowners, governments, organizations, and residents to responsibly and effectively build solar projects that benefit the community. For more information, contact Dan Green at (646) 998-6493 or dan.green@delawareriversolar.com.

About Solstice

Solstice is a mission-driven organization dedicated to bringing affordable solar power to the 80% of Americans who cannot install a rooftop system. Solstice conducts comprehensive marketing campaigns to educate communities about community solar projects in their area, partnering with trusted local organizations to distribute community solar to their membership, conducting outreach efforts and managing the customer experience. To learn more, contact Forrest Watkins at (541) 600-0406 or forrest@solstice.us.

40 Spots Newly Available in Massachusetts Solar Garden

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 10, 2017

Media Contact:
Forrest Watkins
(541) 600-0406
forrest@solstice.us
www.solstice.us

  Photo Credit: BlueWave Solar

Photo Credit: BlueWave Solar

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Oxford, MA - Solstice, a Boston-based social enterprise dedicated to expanding clean energy access to all Americans, is excited to announce that the Barrett Street Solar Farm in Oxford, MA, is open to enrolling additional households. There is enough remaining capacity in the 16.5 MW project for approximately 40 more households.

Residents and businesses from areas around Massachusetts are eligible to participate, including (but not limited to) the towns of Adams, Auburn, Andover, Lawrence, Leominster, North Adams, Pittsfield, Uxbridge, Williams, and Worcester.

The farm is a collection of nine solar arrays located on land that was once the largest piggery in the Northeast. Electricity generated by the project will be used by two nearby schools, The Fay School and Phillips Academy Andover, as well as local small businesses and residents. The project will generate tax revenue for the town of Oxford, and protects the land on which it sits for future agricultural use. Additionally, the solar farm will help Massachusetts achieve its renewable energy goals by avoiding approximately 15,000 tons of carbon annually--the equivalent of 16 million pounds of unburned coal.

The Barrett Street Solar Farm was originally developed by Solstice’s partner, BlueWave Capital LLC, and represents the largest such project in their history. BlueWave and other stakeholders, including landowners, the local utility, and local conservation committees, worked diligently to ensure that the farm did not damage the site or surrounding land during its construction.

Community solar is an exciting opportunity for eligible residents who would like to save money on their electricity bills while supporting local, clean energy. There is no cost to enroll nor any alteration made to customers’ properties, making it an attractive alternative for those who would like to support solar energy but who don’t want to install rooftop panels. Solstice makes the enrollment process simple, and works with customers to explore which energy option is right for them.

About Solstice:

Solstice (solstice.us) is a social enterprise dedicated to bringing affordable solar power to the 80% of Americans who cannot install a rooftop system. Under the Solstice model, households subscribe to a portion of a community solar array, enabling them to access clean energy and save money on their utility bill. Solstice partners with trusted local organizations to distribute community solar to their membership, conducting outreach efforts and managing the customer experience.

About Bluewave:

BlueWave is a solar energy company founded on a mission to protect our planet by expanding access to solar for everyone, everywhere. Founded in Massachusetts, with operations around the globe, BlueWave remains committed to transforming the energy status quo—enabling communities to take control of their energy production, and consumers to choose clean, low cost power.

 

Solstice Helps Fill Dover Solar Garden

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 22, 2017

Media Contact:
Forrest Watkins
(541) 600-0406
forrest@solstice.us
www.solstice.us

Solstice helps to sell out rare greater Boston community solar project in record time.
 

DOVER, MA - Solstice, a Boston-based social enterprise dedicated to expanding clean energy access to all Americans, has helped to fully subscribe a community solar garden in Dover, MA in under eight weeks. Working with solar developer BlueWave, Solstice enrolled residents in the 1.4 MW community solar array sited on a capped landfill at the local waste disposal facility. The solar garden will allow Dover and Boston metro residents to enjoy local clean energy at no cost to join, while saving them 10 percent on their electricity bills. The project is expected to offset approximately 1,300 metric tons of CO2 each year, equivalent to removing 270 cars from the roads or planting 1,250 acres of forest, and utilizes a space that would be otherwise useless due to the toxicity of the old landfill.

Most of the solar farm participants are residents of the town of Dover. For many, the solar garden offered them the chance to participate in clean energy for the first time. Abdellah, one of our customers, had previously looked into rooftop solar through a rooftop analysis at Home Depot, only to find he was ineligible because of the shading on his wooded property. Explaining his motivations for signing up, he said, “You don’t have anything to lose; you’re getting a discount, you’re helping the planet a little bit.”  

Solstice cofounder Sandhya Murali, who manages solar developer collaborations, elaborated on the milestone: "This project is a great example of the potential of community solar collaboration. We generated interest in the community and educated participants, while our partner BlueWave was able to focus on building a beautiful solar garden on unused land. Now, customers can finally participate in affordable, renewable energy.”

“We’ve been working with Solstice since early 2016 and we enjoy collaborating with an organization that shares our goal of expanding renewable energy access to more people," said BlueWave Director of Business Development George Miller. "We are pleased to have the Dover Solar Garden fully enrolled and ready to deliver local clean energy to members of the community for the first time."

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About Solstice:

Solstice Initiative is the first social enterprise dedicated to expanding affordable solar power to the 80% of Americans who cannot install a rooftop system. Under the Solstice model, households subscribe to a portion of a community solar array, enabling them to access clean energy and save money on their utility bill. Solstice partners with trusted local organizations to distribute community solar to their membership, conducting outreach efforts and managing the customer experience.

About Bluewave:

BlueWave is a solar energy company founded on a mission to protect our planet by expanding access to solar for everyone, everywhere. Founded in Massachusetts, with operations around the globe, BlueWave remains committed to transforming the energy status quo—enabling communities to take control of their energy production, and consumers to choose clean, low cost power.

Solstice Selected for Techstars Boston

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 7, 2017

Media Contact:
Danny Tobin
925-876-6627
danny@solstice.us
solstice.us

BOSTON - Solstice, a Boston-based startup dedicated to expanding access to affordable solar power, is joining the prestigious Techstars Boston 2017 Program. Techstars is a global entrepreneurship network and technology startup accelerator that accepts less than 1 percent of applicants. Previous Techstars alumni include FullContact, PillPack, Ginger.io, Localytics and ClassPass.

“We are very grateful to be included in such a remarkable cohort,” said Solstice co-founder and CEO Steph Speirs. “We look forward to learning from Techstars’ expert mentors to reach more customers seeking to switch to solar easily.”

Techstars provides Solstice with funding and valuable mentorship from seasoned entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. Participating companies join a close-knit network of over 900 technology companies that have gone on to raise over $3 billion in funding. 

“When we were making our final selection of companies, we were impressed by the Solstice team’s passion for its mission and the unique way they are using technology to spread solar virally through communities,” said Semyon Dukach, Managing Director of Techstars Boston. “We intend to help them translate their hard work into a truly disruptive product.” 

Solstice Co-Founder and President Steve Moilanen is hopeful that this guidance will help the company deliver on its promises to create a solar product that is accessible to anyone. “Energy equity is what drives Solstice. With the help of Techstars and our generous investors we can offer renters, condo owners, and people with non-optimal roofs a chance to go solar and save for the first time.”

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About Solstice Initiative

Solstice Initiative is the first social enterprise dedicated to expanding affordable solar power to the 80% of Americans who cannot install a rooftop system. Under the Solstice model, households subscribe to a portion of a community solar array, enabling them to access clean energy and save money on their utility bill. Solstice partners with trusted local organizations to distribute community solar to their membership, conducting outreach efforts and managing the customer experience.

About Techstars

Techstars is a mentorship-driven startup accelerator founded by David Cohen, Brad Feld, David Brown, and Jared Polis that holds 13 week programs for startups in 13 cities across the US and abroad. It is considered one of the best startup accelerators in the world.

Statement on Recent Federal Actions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 3, 2017

Media Contact:
Danny Tobin
danny@solstice.us
solstice.us

Since its inception, Solstice has committed itself to and sought to practice the values of equity, diversity, and inclusion.  We believe that these values should be reflected not only in the approach the United States takes to clean energy.   These values should also be broadly expressed in the manner in which the United States treats its citizens—and individuals of any country. America exists in large part due to the immigrants and refugees who arrived here and brought extraordinary gifts to our shores. 


As such, we forcefully condemn and reject any effort to discriminate against any individuals on the basis of color, creed, or class.  We will, moreover, strive to counteract any effort to subject members and stakeholders of our organization to discrimination or mistreatment.  We will seek to safeguard our ability to attract talented individuals of diverse backgrounds.  Finally, we will speak out wholeheartedly and consistently for those policies and practices that truly make America great.

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About Solstice Initiative

Solstice Initiative is the first social enterprise dedicated to expanding affordable solar power to the 80% of Americans who cannot install a rooftop system. Under the Solstice model, households subscribe to a portion of a community solar array, enabling them to access clean energy and save money on their utility bill. Solstice partners with trusted local organizations to distribute community solar to their membership, conducting outreach efforts and managing the customer experience.

U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative Awards Solstice $800K Grant

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 21, 2016

Media Contact:
Jonah Bader
781-572-0432
jonah@solsticeinitiative.org
solstice.us

BOSTON—Yesterday, Solstice Initiative was awarded an $800k grant by the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative through the Solar Energy Evolution and Diffusion Studies 2 (SEEDS2) program. Solstice will use the funding to radically expand access to community-shared solar power by deploying projects serving low-to-moderate income (LMI) consumers.

One of the main goals of the SEEDS2 program is to "increase foundational understanding of the... barriers to solar deployment in the U.S." To date, no mainstream community solar provider has developed a product that allows anyone, regardless of their credit score, to participate. Solstice's project seeks to challenge the assumption that low- to moderate-income households present substantial additional risk for community solar, given the ease with which customers can be swapped in and out of a project. Should this prove to be true, Solstice's project will facilitate the deployment of a market-based solution that will finally bring lower-income residents into the community solar market.

"Solstice is committed to providing underserved Americans with affordable solar, and we are enormously grateful for this SunShot grant," said Steve Moilanen, co-founder and President of Solstice. "These Americans spend a disproportionate amount of their income on electricity. With this funding, we can unlock the market for those that need solar savings the most." 

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About Solstice Initiative

Solstice Initiative is the first social enterprise dedicated to expanding affordable solar power to the 80% of Americans who cannot install a rooftop system. Under the Solstice model, households subscribe to a portion of a community solar array, enabling them to access clean energy and save money on their utility bill. Solstice partners with trusted local organizations to distribute community solar to their membership, conducting outreach efforts and managing the customer experience.

About the SunShot Initiative

The U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative is a collaborative national effort that aggressively drives innovation to make solar energy fully cost-competitive with traditional energy sources before the end of the decade. Through SunShot, the Energy Department supports efforts by private companies, universities, and national laboratories to drive down the cost of solar electricity to $0.06 per kilowatt-hour. Learn more at energy.gov/sunshot

Solstice Named A Startup of the Year in Stevie Awards for "Revolutionary" Model

This week, Solstice won a Gold Stevie Award in the 2016 International Business Awards, a program "honoring organizations of all types and sizes and the people behind them" and "recogniz[ing] outstanding performances in the workplace worldwide." Solstice earned the top prize in the category of Startup of the Year in Consumer Services Industries.

Organizations of all sizes and across almost every industry submitted a record number of over 3,800 nominations for consideration in a wide range of categories. Executives from around the world reviewed the nominations, assigned ratings, and gave comments based on companies' business models and traction. 

"Solstice seems to have found the solution to many households that are not able to install solar energy collectors due to various reasons and circumstances," remarked one judge. "This is really inspiring!" another judge added. "Solstice's model and idea is simple, yet revolutionary and could form the basis of rolling out access to solar power not just within the USA but across the world. The potential flow down of the economic benefits to the community could be tremendous." 

Solstice and BlueWave Team Up to Provide Community Solar to Massachusetts Residents

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 8, 2016

Media Contact:
Jonah Bader
781-572-0432
jonah@solsticeinitiative.org
http://www.solsticeinitiative.org

BOSTON—Solstice, whose mission is to democratize access to clean energy, has joined forces with prominent solar developer BlueWave Capital to bring solar power to Massachusetts residents, especially to those who can't install solar on their rooftop.

Currently, BlueWave operates solar farms in Plympton and Mendon, and Solstice has been tapping nearby residents into these renewable energy projects. With no cost to join and a 10% monthly electricity savings kicking in immediately, the community solar program is a boon for the local economy and environment.

"Partnering with BlueWave has helped us make great strides in our mission. With their help, we are able to offer an easy and affordable solar option to families, companies, and community organizations in Massachusetts," said Solstice CFO Sandhya Murali, who manages solar developer collaborations. “We look forward to continuing our work with BlueWave to unlock solar power for these Americans."

“We’ve been working with Solstice since launching our Community Solar product in Massachusetts earlier this year and strongly believe in the organization’s mission and approach to bringing solar to residents in Massachusetts, and beyond," said BlueWave Principal Chris Gosline. "We look forward to building our relationship with Solstice as we scale up our Community Solar portfolio in the state, and applaud their team on the solar movement they are building."

Massachusetts Clean Energy Center Awards Solstice a MassChallenge Scholarship

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 13, 2016

Media Contact:
Jonah Bader
781-572-0432
jonah@solsticeinitiative.org
http://www.solsticeinitiative.org

BOSTON—Solstice, a finalist in this year's cohort of the MassChallenge Boston accelerator, edged out other cleantech startups to earn a Massachusetts Clean Energy Center Scholarship of $5,000. The scholarship "recognizes startups in Massachusetts that are developing and commercializing technologies that contribute to the advancement of clean energy & water innovation."

Solstice will dedicate the resources to increased outreach efforts to houses of worship and small businesses in southeastern Massachusetts. “Through the MassChallenge Boston scholarship program, entrepreneurs are able to focus on implementing strategies that help drive growth rather than worry about the financial burdens involved with launching and growing a business,” said Scott Bailey, Managing Director of MassChallenge Boston.

The scholarship builds upon the strong preexisting relationship between Solstice and Mass CEC, which has awarded Solstice funding through its internship programming. 

Solstice Adds Clean Energy Collective as Key Partner for Community Solar in Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 22, 2016

Media Contact:
Jonah Bader
Solstice
jonah@solsticeinitiative.org
http://www.solsticeinitiative.org

BOSTON—Solstice, the first social enterprise dedicated to bringing solar power to every American, is now partnering with Clean Energy Collective, a leader in solar services, to bring clean energy to Massachusetts and help homes, community organizations, and small businesses save money on their electric bills.

Clean Energy Collective has already built a solar farm in Uxbridge, and Solstice is working to enroll ratepayers in the area who cannot put solar panels on their roof because they rent, get too much shade, or face other technical and financial obstacles. By subscribing to a community solar project, at no cost, Massachusetts residents can enjoy a 10% monthly savings on their electric bills.

“We are excited to be collaborating with Clean Energy Collective," said CFO Sandhya Murali, who manages business development partnerships for Solstice. “They have a wealth of expertise in solar development, and we are certain that this partnership will help us carry out our mission of expanding access to clean energy."

Solstice Wins Obvious Ventures #worldpositive prize at GES 2016

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 24, 2016

Media Contact:
Jonah Bader
781-572-0432
jonah@solsticeinitiative.org
http://www.solsticeinitiative.org

SAN FRANCISCO—Beating out a competitive field of startups, Solstice won the coveted #worldpositive prize at the 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit hosted by the White House in Silicon Valley. The prize comes with a $50,000 investment in Solstice from Obvious Ventures, a venture capital firm launched by Twitter and Medium co-founder Evan Williams, in addition to their ongoing guidance and support.

The firm selected Solstice after hearing a pitch from Co-Founder and President Steph Speirs, and Speirs was interviewed onstage by AOL Founder Steve Case immediately preceding President Obama's remarks to the conference.

Obvious concluded that Solstice is poised to make a prodigious impact on fighting climate change and ensuring energy equity. "Steph wants to makes the solar revolution 'as inclusive as possible.' That’s an opportunity we can get behind," Obvious wrote in a statement.

For more information, see the statement issued by Obvious here.

 

Solstice Takes Grand Prize in Kia/TakePart's Re-Visionaries Contest

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 31, 2016

Media Contact:
Jonah Bader
781-572-0432
jonah@solsticeinitiative.org
http://www.solsticeinitiative.org

BOSTON—This week, Solstice won TakePart’s “Re-Visionaries” Contest, which pitted 10 social enterprise finalists in an online competition, and secured the $5,500 grand prize from Kia. This support will enable Solstice to ramp up its outreach efforts to Massachusetts communities to enroll households in local community solar gardens.

The contest featured early-stage nonprofits from around the country tackling a host of societal problems. From March 8 to 22, voting was open to the public to select the most promising and exciting social venture, with Solstice garnering the highest number of votes. 

“The prize is a great reminder that solving the solar access problem in America is so much bigger than ourselves,” said Steph Speirs, Solstice Co-Founder and President. “It’s a reminder that none of us can tackle big, thorny problems alone, and our organization is only as effective as the supporters and talent it can rally to work together.”

Solstice Initiative Partners with Nexamp to Expand Solar Options in Massachusetts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
July 1, 2015

Media Contact:
Steve Moilanen
Solstice Initiative
(617) 297-7614
steve@solsticeinitiative.org
http://www.solsticeinitiative.org

Corporate Contact
Edith Shi
Nexamp
(617) 431-1440 x116
eshi@nexamp.com
http://www.nexamp.com 
 

Community solar model enables millions of additional Massachusetts customers to switch to affordable clean energy—no rooftop required


BOSTON–Solstice Initiative, the first social enterprise dedicated to bringing solar power to every American, today announced that it is partnering with Nexamp, a leading provider of solar solutions, to expand access to clean energy savings for Massachusetts families, non-profits and small businesses.

An estimated 80 percent of Massachusetts households cannot currently install solar panels, either because the home has limited access to sunshine, or for a variety of other technical and financial reasons. Through community solar, Massachusetts residents can now “go solar” by subscribing to portions of an off-site solar power project. 

Solstice Initiative will work to help families, community organizations, and businesses participate in Nexamp’s community solar arrays being built across Massachusetts. Upon enrolling, these customers will see 15% savings on their electric bill once the project is active.

“Nexamp is a leader in providing solar power to organizations across Massachusetts, and deploying community solar to bring clean energy to individuals is the logical next step,” said Steph Speirs, Co-Founder and President of Solstice Initiative. “We believe you should not be locked out of the market for solar just because you rent your home or live on a shaded street. Nexamp is helping to overcome those barriers, and we are thrilled to be working with them to share the benefits of solar power with a new set of customers.”

Solstice Initiative was founded in 2014 and was selected for the Princeton eLab Accelerator Program and Halcyon Incubator, which supports social enterprises with ambitious visions of social change. It has also received accolades from the Verizon Powerful Answers award and MIT’s Climate CoLab prize, and was recently selected for the Echoing Green Climate Fellowship. Solstice works with top national solar providers, such as SolarCity, to make clean energy more accessible for all Americans.  

“Solstice Initiative shares our vision of community solar’s promise for a previously underserved segment of utility customers,” said Zaid Ashai, CEO of Nexamp. “Nexamp has been delivering savings to Massachusetts customers through solar power for nearly a decade. The ability to deliver those savings through Commonwealth’s best community solar product is a powerful enhancement to our vertically-integrated approach.” 

Nexamp is a Massachusetts-based company that develops, builds, owns, and maintains solar projects.  The company has installed over 40 megawatts of solar projects in over 100 cities and towns across the Commonwealth.  In addition to its own portfolio of assets, Nexamp offers third-party EPC and O&M services, and its community solar product offers an attractive option to developers looking to optimize the value their solar assets. The company is Solstice Initiative’s exclusive partner for community solar services.

To find out more information, visit www.solsticeinitiative.org/go-solar or call (617) 297-7614.

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About Solstice Initiative
Solstice Initiative is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and the first social enterprise dedicated to expanding affordable solar power to every American household, especially the 80 percent that cannot install a rooftop system. Under the Solstice model, households purchase a portion of a community-shared solar array, enabling them to access clean energy and save money on their utility bill. Solstice partners with socially-minded organizations to distribute community solar to their local constituents. Solstice designs, markets, and administers this solar offering on behalf of community organizations.

About Nexamp
Nexamp is leading the transformation to the new energy economy with proven solutions for solar energy development, ownership, and operation. Our comprehensive capabilities span the entire solar project lifecycle – from project development, design and construction to financing and operations and maintenance. Our ability to provide integrated, best-in-class solutions makes solar energy simple and profitable for our clients and partners.

 

Solstice Initiative Wins Coveted Echoing Green 2015 Climate Fellowship

Prestigious network names founders among world’s best emerging social innovators

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

BOSTON – Global nonprofit Echoing Green today awarded Solstice Initiative founders Steph Speirs and Steve Moilanen a highly competitive and coveted Fellowship for their work to provide solar power to underserved Americans.

The Fellowship is a prize given to the most innovative, bold ideas for social change in the world. Echoing Green offers seed funding, mentoring, and leadership opportunities to the one percent of applicants that they select.

In response to receiving the fellowship, Speirs said, “It’s a true honor for Solstice to be recognized by a celebrated organization like Echoing Green. More Americans using solar power will help families save money and preserve the environment—and this fellowship allows us to do just that.”

Solstice is the first social enterprise dedicated to putting affordable solar power within reach of every American, particularly the 80 percent that cannot install solar panels on their roof. Under the Solstice model, households purchase a portion of a community-shared solar array, enabling them to access clean energy for the first time and save money on their utility bill—without an upfront cost. Solstice is based in Boston and currently undertaking projects in southern and central Massachusetts, with plans for expansion to multiple states.

52 organizations were chosen based on a rigorous selection process from a pool of 3,629 global candidates. As part of the program, Speirs and Moilanen will receive $90,000 in funding for two years, a health insurance stipend, leadership development courses, pro bono services, mentoring from leading business professionals and, most importantly, become part of a global network of social impact professionals.

“We’re inspired by the other dedicated leaders selected for the 2015 Echoing Green Fellowships and will support and champion them as they continue working to make the world a healthier, safer, and more equitable place to live,” said Moilanen.

Since 1987, Echoing Green has invested almost $40 million in seed-stage funding and strategic assistance to nearly 700 world-class leaders driving positive social change in more than sixty countries. Past Fellows have included the founders of Teach For America, City Year, Citizen Schools, One Acre Fund, and SKS Microfinance.

“Echoing Green Fellowships are designed to help these emerging leaders go further, faster, to change the world. We’re proud to be investing in tomorrow’s leaders,” said Echoing Green President Dr. Cheryl Dorsey. “Many of the Fellows chosen are leading projects in the earliest stages, when it is hardest to find the necessary resources to get off the ground.”

Solstice Initiative was founded in 2014 and was selected for the Princeton eLab Accelerator Program and Halcyon Incubator, which supports social enterprises with ambitious visions of social change. It won the Audience Choice Award at Princeton Entrepreneurs’ Network Startup Competition and has received accolades from the Verizon Powerful Answers award and MIT’s Climate CoLab prize.

Full descriptions of the 2015 Echoing Green Fellows can be accessed at http://echoinggreen.org/2015-fellows.

Read Echoing Green’s official announcement, which mentions Solstice Initiative, here.

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About Solstice Initiative

Solstice Initiative is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and the first social enterprise dedicated to expanding affordable solar power to every American household, especially the 80 percent that cannot install a rooftop system. Under the Solstice model, households purchase a portion of a community-shared solar array, enabling them to access clean energy and save money on their utility bill. Solstice partners with socially-minded organizations to distribute community solar to their local constituents. Solstice designs, markets, and administers this solar offering on behalf of community organizations. To find out more information, visit solsticeinitiative.org.

Steve Moilanen, Co-Founder and CEO, has spent years working for the federal government, international organizations, and political campaigns in support of social change. He was previously employed by the White House Office Energy and Climate Change, which worked to reduce carbon emissions from the electricity industry, promulgate fuel efficiency standards, and manage the federal response to the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill. In September 2014, Steve was selected as a Halcyon Fellow, which recognizes and supports outstanding young entrepreneurs with ambitious visions of social change. Steve’s experience also includes employment with the United Nations Environment Programme, the U.S. Department of Energy, and Obama for America. Steve graduated magna cum laude from Brown University and holds a Master in Public Affairs degree from Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School. See his Echoing Green profile at http://www.echoinggreen.org/fellows/steve-moilanen.

Steph Speirs, Co-Founder and President, is a social entrepreneur and community builder with eight years of operational management experience in multiple countries. She was selected as a Global Fellow with Acumen, an impact investment fund that recognizes leaders in social enterprise. She previously worked as the Innovation Manager in sales and marketing at d.light India, a solar products company powering areas without reliable electricity; spearheaded Acumen's renewable energy sector investment strategy in Pakistan; developed Middle East policy as the youngest-ever Director at the White House National Security Council; and managed field operations in seven states for the first Obama presidential campaign. She holds a B.A. from Yale and a Master in Public Affairs (MPA) with distinction from Princeton, and is a recipient of the Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans. See her Echoing Green profile at http://www.echoinggreen.org/fellows/stephanie-speirs.

Volunteer Opportunities: Solstice is recruiting volunteers to help with a range of projects including market research, graphic design, web design, programming, marketing, and outreach. Email your resume to contact@solsticeinitiative.org for more information.

 About Echoing Green

Echoing Green’s mission is to unleash next generation talent to solve the world's biggest problems. Echoing Green was one of the first organizations to invest in early-stage social entrepreneurs through our Fellowship program almost 30 years ago. Today, the organization remains focused on building a global community of emerging leaders in social change. To date, the organization has supported almost 700 organizations led by the most extraordinary purpose-driven leaders of our time. Echoing Green Fellows include the founders of Teach For America, City Year, One Acre Fund, The Global Fund for Children and SKS Microfinance. Echoing Green’s accelerator programming and investments help these leaders to go further, faster. Echoing Green also runs a suite of innovative programs that cultivate and support promising leaders, including programming dedicated to purpose development, board leader preparation, and impact investing. For more information, visit www.echoinggreen.org.