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Residential Solar Boom For Central Coast

January 25,2015

More locals want to say goodbye to PG&E.

Screen Shot 2015-01-25 at 5.48.38 PMHome owners in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties installed a record number of solar panel units, typically on rooftops in 2014, according to Construction Monitor.

The solar boom saw solar installations surge from 848 in the two- county area in 2013 to 2529 in 2014, a 300% jump.

The busiest contractor was Solar City with 659 permits,followed by Sunrun with 269 and then by locally-owned Solarponics with 195.

The average price was just under $15,000 with a 30% federal tax credit available.

The boom times started in 2013 – a banner year for clean energy and the U.S. solar industry. California, the nation’s solar standout, more than doubled its rooftop solar installations in 2013 from 1,000 megawatts (MW) to 2,000 MWs.

Decreasing regulatory hurdles and fees and the cost of solar itself has helped increase activity to say nothing of rising utility costs. Add ready financing for both lease and ownership of the panels.

Leasing a system can put a dent in your PG&E bill but if you buy it  your utility bill is likely to drop to $10 a month or less.

Go Solar

The Go Solar California! campaign – a joint effort of the California Energy Commission and the California Public Utilities Commission.has the goal is to encourage Californians to install 3,000 megawatts of solar energy systems on homes and businesses by the end of 2016, making renewable energy an everyday reality. The program also has a goal to install 585 million therms of gas-displacing solar hot water systems by the end of 2017.

The Go Solar California website provides California consumers a “one-stop shop” for information on solar programs, rebates, tax credits, and information on installing and interconnecting solar electric and solar thermal systems. The site has information on program rules, including eligible equipment and standards, as well as information on how to find an eligible, licensed solar contractor.

California is not  alone in moving quickly  to renewable  energy sources.

According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, low-carbon, clean energy investments jumped by 16 percent last year worldwide, totaling $310 billion, a five-fold increase from 10 years ago.

Screen Shot 2015-01-25 at 5.48.25 PMGraphic  shows potential savings over the years with  lease. Savings are much bigger if you own the system.

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