Sharing the Sun

 

How An American Start-up Plans to Supply Solar Power to Those Without Panels

For a small amount of people, solar panels just aren’t a viable option.

They might be renting in a high rise. Or perhaps they live in an area where their roof is completely covered by shade. And while they would love to be creating their own clean, renewable solar energy each day, their living situation means that it’s not an option.

But what if they could share solar energy with the panel-fitted home across the street?

That’s exactly the idea American start up Yeloha have come up with. They’re looking to share the sun’s energy with those who want to use it, but for whatever reason can’t.

Here’s How it Works:

The system involves two parties – a sun host and a sun partner.

Sun hosts are homes or buildings ideally situated in sun-soaked areas conducive with solar PV. By signing up to be a host, the ‘sun host’ will receive free solar panels including installation and a portion of the solar energy generated by the panels (about 25 per cent).

Sun hosts will remain with their existing utility company, while receiving lower bills because of the energy they’re savings each month.

By connecting with a sun host in their area, sun partners can finally have access to cleaner, cheaper energy produced from their host’s rooftop PV.

In essence, it’s a win-win situation for both parties.

‘We are great believers in this peer-to-peer concept, which I think is pretty unique,’ Yeloha CEO and co-founder Amit Rosner said.

‘We really think solar should be produced where it’s consumed.’

Sun partners (or consumers) are required to sign up for a contract to buy the solar power from a Yeloha installation, which entitles them to net metering credits.

Rosner says a typical agreement will last for three years, with an initial payment of ‘less than $200’. The Boston start-up says that the system could reduce a consumer power bill by an average of 15 per cent.

A test period earlier this year saw ‘several thousands’ of people in Massachusetts register their interest in the program, Rosner said. Yeloha has already completed one solar panel installation, with its output paid for by 10 consumers before it was built. Another 10 or so roofs are in the process of getting panels installed.

While it’s only in its infancy, if Yeloha is able to supply solar power to those who can’t have it installed, it will succeed in bringing the benefits of solar energy to more people – a great outcome for the consumer and industry alike.