Rising above the flood

Rising above the flood

Residential Solar
Driving home from work on a chilly night, Kandace Donovan sees that the power has gone down again in her Lyons, Colorado neighborhood. She passes the darkened homes and then there is her house - lit up like a Christmas tree! It is with a sense of satisfaction that she opens the door to her home and steps into the cheery interior greeting her noisy children. In December 2013 Independent Power Systems installed a grid-tied solar electric system complete with battery backup at Kandace’s home. When the power goes down, there is a seamless switchover from the grid-tied solar system to the battery backup system. I decided to have a chat with Kandace about her system to get the information straight from the source. Here's how it went: What initially…
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Community solar projects offer solar power to those without rooftop panels

Community solar projects offer solar power to those without rooftop panels

Community Solar
Solar-Power Sharing Programs May Be Poised to Take Off Community solar projects offer those without rooftop panels a way to tap the sun’s power Many consumers would like to switch to solar power but can’t. It could be their homes have too much shade or their roofs can’t accommodate solar panels, or perhaps they live in a condominium or apartment building. Enter so-called community or shared solar, which allows people to buy solar power from centrally owned arrays. The power is delivered by the local utility, and customers get credits on their monthly bills for any power the project sells back to the grid. [caption id="attachment_453" align="aligncenter" width="700"] States with the most community solar capacity[/caption] Although a relatively small business now, community solar is growing and could account for as…
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Solar Wins in Colorado!

Solar Wins in Colorado!

Net Metering, Politics
This week, Colorado regulators decided to preserve the state’s successful net metering program, one of the most important policies for empowering families, schools and businesses to go solar. Commissioners saw through the barrage of misinformation and rhetoric from solar’s opponents, calling the solar crediting program “satisfactory and balanced as is.” We’ll say. Net metering gives Colorado solar customers full credit on their utility bills for the valuable power they produce for use nearby. It puts Coloradans in charge of their energy choices and utility costs like never before. It helps reduce the need for expensive, polluting power infrastructure, building healthier and more resilient communities. And it spurs growth in Colorado’s new energy economy, supporting thousands of jobs and keeping energy dollars invested in our communities. Thanks to the Commission’s leadership, Coloradans can…
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Here’s why 2015 is the ‘tipping point’ for community solar

Here’s why 2015 is the ‘tipping point’ for community solar

Community Solar
“As utilities wake up to the value proposition, it will increasingly shape the market” With many utilities addressing the challenge of rooftop solar, community shared solar is fast emerging as an appetizing solar business model. A top solar research firm now says 2015 is the year that the community solar market breaks through. A new market report forecasts community shared solar developers will grow 2014’s 65.9 MW of cumulative installed capacity to 465 MW by the end of 2016. A 59% annual growth rate for the sector over the next five years will take the 21 MW installed during 2014 to 534 MW installed during 2020, it predicts. “There may have been more articles about community solar than projects brought online to date,” joked GTM Research Sr. Analyst Cory Honeyman, co-author of U.S. Community Solar Market…
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