SolarCity announced a lease financing agreement with Goldman Sachs to fund more than $500 million in solar projects; an estimated 110 MW in generation capacity. The financing makes it possible for homeowners, businesses, government and non-profit organizations to install solar panels with no upfront cost and pay less for electricity than they currently pay for utility bills. The agreement was initiated in 2012 and expanded per its initial terms at the end of April. Goldman Sachs has set a target of $40 billion in financings and investments in renewable energy over the next decade.
Microgrid Solar is driving a Solar Express truck (pictured) around St. Louis as a marketing tactic and to provide on-site power at events. The truck sports solar panels on the top and front, as well as a mobile phone charging station. The energy from the solar panels is stored in a battery on the truck, and the electricity can be made available for use to power events that would normally require a gas-powered generator. Solar Express is making the rounds to dozens of community events, providing a power source at outdoor venues. The vehicle’s mobile phone charging station is made up of numerous small lockers where people can charge their phones securely.
FireFlower Alternative Energy has partnered with First Highland Management & Development to install a rooftop solar array at 65 Sprague Street in Boston, Mass. The facility is a 450,000-sq-foot, multi-use building occupied by a diverse group of tenants. The solar array is net metered and interconnected to the NSTAR grid. The project will produce almost 65 percent of the electricity consumed in the building.
REC Solar completed the 500 kW community solar project in Boulder, Colo. The Cowdery Meadows Solar Array is the first community solar project completed under Xcel Energy’s Solar Rewards Community program, under which any utility ratepayer can directly purchase energy from the solar garden. REC Solar designed and built the array, while Clean Energy Collective will operate and maintain the system. Homeowners and businesses can now purchase as little as one kW or enough to power their entire electricity load.