The Co-op closed to new members on May 31, 2017 but thanks to the coordinating and implementation efforts of MD SUN, 169 households learned about the benefits and options for installing solar photovoltaic panels (PV). Thirty households took advantage of the approximate 20 percent discount available through our bulk-purchasing co-op. Together, these households will install 272 kW of solar power capacity which will generate 340,093 kWh of electricity per year. How does this help? Each year, these solar arrays will prevent 127 tons of coal from being burned eliminating 239 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions. Now that is something to cheer about!
A co-op is when a group of neighbors work with community partners to install solar electric systems together. By using the bulk buying power of the group, each participant saves on the cost of his system.
The group will go through the process of purchasing solar electric systems together. Through a competitive bidding process, the co-op will select a single contractor to install systems on all of the homes. Each participant owns their own system and will sign their own contract with the installer.
Who are Community Power Network and MD SUN?
Community Power Network is a DC-based nonprofit that helps communities go solar. We got started in 2007 when a group of Mt. Pleasant neighbors got together and formed the Mt. Pleasant Solar Co-op to go solar as a group. Since then we’ve been organizing neighborhood solar co-ops, doing policy advocacy, and helping other groups get started around the country. Our goal is to help all communities in the country harness the benefits of renewables! We have lots of technical experience with solar in the region and currently run state programs in DC, MD, VA, FL, OH, and WV.
MD SUN is a state project of Community Power Network dedicated to educating residents about the benefits of distributed solar energy, helping them organize group installations, and strengthening Maryland’s solar policies and its community of solar supporters.
Why should we participate in a solar co-op?
Going solar as a group has many advantages:
How does a co-op purchase work?
Those who are interested in moving forward then sign up to join the co-op via an online form. This signals your interest in going solar, but is not a binding commitment to participate in the solar co-op. In this first phase, the goal is to recruit at least 25 co-op members. Tell your friends, neighbors, and community about the co-op. The larger the group, the more installers are likely to bid. This helps the co-op get the best value and lowest price for solar.