Renewable resources continue to grow in popularity, and rooftop solar continues to decrease in cost, thanks to financial incentives and the growing number of companies offering solar panel installation.
When it comes to other forms of energy, homeowners are looking for something less expensive or more environmentally friendly. These are just a few of the reasons why interest in rooftop solar systems is rising.
Renewable sources — including solar — make up approximately 5% of Pioneer’s overall power supply. At the mid-way point of 2019, Pioneer had 46 consumer-members who owned and maintained their own solar array.
Our consumer-members want options, which is why Pioneer wants to make sure its members are aware of the cooperative’s options and processes when it comes to renewables — specifically, solar energy. It’s not only important to understand the cooperative’s perspective, but also for consumers to fully understand the true costs and potential for saving energy.
To determine whether rooftop solar is a good fit for your particular setup, you, as a homeowner, need to do your research.
It’s important to start by looking at the:
Overall energy efficiency of the home
Age and pitch of the roof
Orientation of the sun in relation to the home
Weather patterns for the area in which you live
And remember, solar is not for everyone. Consider factors such as the direction your home faces, the condition of your roof, obstructions such as trees or buildings that may block the sun during daily peak generation periods. These peak periods are typically between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.
If it is determined that solar may not be a good fit for you, or you live in a rented home, keep in mind that Pioneer offers a community solar program, called OurSolar, as well as Envirowatts. Both programs allow you to purchase green energy without the investment or hassles of purchasing your own equipment. At the end of June, Pioneer had 63 consumer-members subscribed to 362 panels, with 18 panels still available.
It’s important that you work with your cooperative before purchasing equipment or signing a contract with a solar vendor so you can determine what type of system works best for you, your lifestyle, and your utility provider. Interconnecting a solar array with Pioneer’s distribution system requires an application, as well as contractual agreements.
To get started researching your solar options, visit our web page at www.pioneerec.com/renewable-energy for a list of our most frequently asked questions, a list of steps to take before installing solar, questions to ask your solar contractor, and other useful resources.
For more detailed information or to begin your solar installation process, contact Todd Garrett, Pioneer’s manager of government and community relations.