Celebrating Community Solar Programs

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Citizens have many reasons for organizing or participating in a community solar project. Just as motives vary, so do the possible project models, each with a unique set of costs, benefits, responsibilities, and rewards. There are at least 52 shared renewables projects in 17 different states throughout the US.

“There are a number of guides for development of community solar projects “commented Marlene Moore, VP Marketing at Green Power Labs. “One of interest is the Community Solar Guide developed in 2010 for the National Renewable Energy Lab by Northwest Sustainable Energy for Economic Development, Keyes and Fox, Stoel Rives, and the Bonneville Environmental Foundation.” Another is the Community Solar Handbook developed by the US based Solar Electric Power Association. The Drake Landing Solar Community (DLSC) is a master planned neighbourhood in the Town of Okotoks, Alberta, a community in southern Canada” Moore added.

While many of these guides are area specific they do allow citizens considering or planning new projects to learn from others’ experiences and to customize options that best suit their communities.