Solar Co-op Moves Forward, Accepting New Members
The Twin Cities Area Solar Co-op is underway, with more than 50 residents already signed on, and open to new members (homeowners and business owners) in the larger Twin Cities metro area, including Anoka and Sherburne counties, until April 30.
The solar co-op is a partnership between nonprofit group Solar United Neighbors (SUN); the City of Coon Rapids; Minnesota Interfaith Power and Light; the City of Minneapolis Sustainability Division; and the Minnesota Renewable Energy Society. Co-op members recently selected Minnesota-based installer iSolar to serve members of the group through a competitive bidding process. Personalized proposals are going out now based on the group rate.
SUN expands access to solar by educating Minnesotans about the benefits of distributed solar energy, helping them organize group solar installations, and strengthening Minnesota solar policies and its community of solar supporters.
“I am excited to work with iSolar to develop a solution that is good for the planet, my home and my budget (current and future),” states Cathy Petersen, a solar co-op member who served on the co-op installer selection committee. “I learned a great deal as a participant in the installer selection process; it was informative and provided me with the information I needed to choose to go forward with this investment.”
Co-op members may also be able to use the solar tax credit for rooftop solar thanks to the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) in 2022. The IRA increases the tax credit to 30 percent and extends it for another 10 years while also expanding other clean energy incentives like home battery storage. These credits make solar and electrification more affordable than ever.
The solar co-op is free to join; doing so is not a commitment to purchase panels. By going solar as a group and choosing a single installer, members can save on the total cost and have the support of fellow group members and solar experts at SUN.
Since 2013, SUN has been helping neighbors join together and go solar around the country, completing 325 solar co-ops, and helping more than 7,000 people go solar, including more than 200 in Minnesota.
For more information, visit SolarUnitedNeighbors.org/twincities.
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