Installing solar panels vertically, typically on the outside wall of a building, can be an option when roof-top space isn’t available. However, higher installation costs coupled with lower production likely means vertical solar panels will remain a niche market in the solar industry. We’ll explain all that below, and let you know when going vertical might be a viable option.Continue reading
For those on their way to Orlando’s Disney World to get Belle’s autograph or revel in the Magic Kingdom, the first taste you might get of the famous park is while you still on the plane, staring down at the biggest, bluest Mickey Mouse you’ll ever see. You’d probably be surprised to know that it’s actually a solar installation!
This might come as a surprise, but Walt Disney World has come out as a major adopter of renewable energy. They just completed a large-scale solar installation to power the park and while Disney isn’t the first theme park to go solar, and soon it won’t be the largest, it has a certain panache that no one other than Disney could pull off.
In late 2015, Disney World leased 20 acres of land to Duke Energy, a large utility company operating in several states in the southeastern United States, for construction of a 5 megawatt (MW) photovoltaic solar power plant – the largest solar project in the park thus far. As always, Disney never does anything without going all the way and the 48,000 solar panels are installed in the all-too-familiar shape of a giant, renewable Mickey Mouse head.Continue reading
Maybe your business isn’t Apple, Walmart or Google, but solar isn’t just a big benefit for big businesses.
For a business that owns its own building going solar is clear sailing, with several provisos.
Over the last few years, the boom in solar rooftop panels has gotten plenty of attention. But manufacturing, installing, and selling those solar systems takes a lot of work. Not every homeowner can afford panels right now, and not every person with a house has the right incentives to make it cost effective. That’s why more and more, it makes sense to focus on commercial solar versus residential, as large open spaces will cost less for solar installation than rooftops. And The Motley Fool agrees, which is why it recently focused on the untapped opportunity of commercial solar.
As of last year, GTM Research (cited in the article) put the average cost of a residential solar system at $3.48 per watt, while a commercial system only cost $2.25 per watt. Yet commercial solar goes beyond just panels, as they’re something that relates to consumers and the grid on a larger scale. Solar needs to compete by adapting and forming partnerships with energy storage providers. For example, SolarCity has been working with Tesla to launch energy storage products so homeowners and business owners with solar panels can keep the energy they create.Continue reading
And solar-powered chain stores in general are leading the way when it comes to corporate solar energy. Walgreens has installed over 134 solar systems around the US and has plans for many more. Sam’s Club, Ikea, Costco, Kohls, and many others have also pledged to dramatically grow their use of solar.Continue reading