Solar energy is the cheapest it’s ever been, 20-40% lower than anyone initially thought it would be. That’s great for solar developers and big companies that are looking to become more sustainable, but what could this mean for everyone else? What if your roof is not a viable option for solar panels? And solar panels can still be a costly choice for the average homeowner, even if the payback period is shorter than it has ever been. What if you can’t afford it? Enter community solar. Here’s what you need to know.
In general, its goal is twofold: equalize the opportunity for people to have access to solar power, and boost the usage of solar energy across the country. Community solar differs across the country. There is no one set model of what it is, and therefore it can be modified to satisfy the needs of different communities.
Community solar guidelines could be the key to a rapidly expanding solar world. It’s a win-win-win. You get to pay less for your energy each month, the world is benefitting from cleaner energy, and you don’t need to pay any of those upfront costs to install any physical panels. Community solar is the future.
RCC Fellow — Sara Heimlich — Tulane University
RCC Fellow Sara Heimlich is a senior at Tulane University majoring in Environmental Studies and Political Science, with minors in History and Psychology.
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