An innovative program designed to help South Carolinians go solar and save on electricity costs is formally launching in the Columbia area on Wednesday, May 6th.Solarize South Carolina is an initiative of SmartPower, a non-profit organization whose mission it to advance clean energy, and Dividend Solar, a national solar financing company. Solarize South Carolina is already operating in the Charleston area and has set a goal to more than triple the amount of residential solar in the state, helping to grow solar investments – and jobs — in communities across South Carolina.
Solarize is an award-winning and proven “group buy” residential solar program that is accelerating the growth of solar in many cities across the U.S. Solarize South Carolina plans to install solar on 2,000 homes in the next 18 months. Currently, South Carolina ranks 31st in the country in installed solar capacity with 11 megawatts of solar energy installed (Solar Energy Industries Association). This is enough solar to power 1,000 homes.
South Carolina is beginning to build momentum behind renewable energy, which will help offset utility costs, create jobs and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. In April of 2014 the South Carolina legislature unanimously passed a bill to allow net metering and mandate solar generation. Solarize South Carolina will help residential customers take advantage of these new policies.
“It’s not just ratepayers that are benefiting from this legislation. We’re building a new clean-energy industry right here in South Carolina, creating good-paying jobs,” says Representative James Smith D-Richland. “This is good for South Carolina all around.”
“Recently passed legislation has played a significant role in transforming the solar landscape and paving the way for programs like solarize,” says SmartPower’s President & CEO Brian F. Keane. “And at the same time, we’re seeing costs are coming down so much–both the cost of the hardware and through bundled purchasing–that the installation costs drop another 20 percent. This, combined with zero down financing from Dividend Solar, makes going solar in South Carolina a no-brainer!”
SCE&G is at the forefront of the renewable energy transition, and is a supporter of Solarize South Carolina as a way to provide additional benefits for its customers.
“The work that is being done by Solarize South Carolina will give SCE&G customers another clean energy option and help to advance solar across the state as intended by the Distributed Energy Resource Program Act that was signed into law last year,” said Danny Kassis, SCE&G VP Customer Relations and Renewables. “Our support and investment in solar is an important part of this effort to create a balanced energy portfolio that will serve our customers for the future. We are excited to see this innovative and award-winning program come to South Carolina.”
Solarize South Carolina will feature Dividend Solar’s full-service EmpowerLoanTM, allowing homeowners to easily go solar for zero down with no out-of-pocket expense.
“Dividend Solar is delighted to be bringing the Solarize South Carolina program to Columbia, the state capital. We look forward to helping homeowners make the decision to go solar easier than ever with the EmpowerLoan,” said Eric White, President of Dividend Solar.
Further, as a strong encouragement to participate, communities in the Columbia area can receive free solar on any community building they want when 60 residents sign up before the September 30th program deadline.
The Columbia area launch event will be on May 6th at the Columbia Museum of Art, from 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM, and is open to the public. Follow up Solar Workshops have been scheduled at Richland Library Cooper on Thursday, May 7th and Richland Library Southeast on May 14th, both starting at 6:30 pm. Details can be found on www.SolarizeSC.org. Residents interested in finding out if their home is good for solar can also sign up for a free no obligation site visit at www.SolarizeSC.org.
Susanna Murley: 202-236-1749, firstname.lastname@example.org
Sara Hummel-Rajca: 803-727-2156, email@example.com
SmartPower is an award-winning nonprofit organization that works on behalf of municipalities, utilities, businesses, foundations, state agencies and the federal government to turbo-charge energy efficiency and renewable energy efforts. Through innovative on- the-ground campaigns using friendly competitions and challenges, SmartPower is able to create measureable results and save energy.www.smartpower.org
About Dividend Solar:
Dividend Solar is a leading solar financing company that partners with local installers across the U.S. to offer its $0-down EmpowerLoan. With performance guarantees, warranty ￼￼￼management and system production monitoring included with every loan, the EmpowerLoan offers a better, simpler way for solar ownership.www.dividendsolar.com