DATE: January 19, 2017
NAME: Kay Sommers
Environmental Protection and Growth Management
BROWARD COUNTY, FL - Neighbors have formed two solar co-ops, one for County residents who live east of US 441 and the other for residents who live west of US 441. The goal is to save money and make going solar easier, while building a network of solar supporters. Broward County, Go Solar Florida and FL SUN are co-op sponsors.
"We're forming this co-op to make saving money with solar energy as simple as possible," said Kay Sommers, Senior Natural Resources Specialist, Environmental Protection and Growth Management Department. "Residents will have the support of a group instead of navigating the process alone."
FL SUN expands access to solar by educating Florida residents about the benefits of distributed solar energy, helping them organize group solar installations, and strengthening Florida's solar policies and its community of solar supporters.
"I am excited to work with Broward residents to educate them about the benefits of solar energy," said Angela DeMonbreun, FL SUN Co-op Manager. "If you've ever thought about going solar before, this is the perfect opportunity to do so."
Broward residents interested in joining either co-op can sign up at East Co-op or West Co-op. Joining a co-op is not a commitment to purchase solar panels. Once the groups are large enough, FL SUN will help the co-ops solicit competitive bids from area solar installers. Co-op members will select a single company for installations and will then have the option to purchase panels individually based on the installer's group rate. By going solar as a group and choosing a single installer, participants can save up to 20 percent off the cost of their system.
The group will host four solar information meetings to educate the community about solar and the co-op process:
· February 6th, 7PM at Art Serve, 1350 East Sunrise Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale
· February 7th, 7PM at Broward County Government Center West, 1 North University Drive, Plantation
· March 6th, 7PM at Art Serve, 1350 East Sunrise Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale
· March 7th, at 7PM at Broward County Government Center West, 1 North University Drive, Plantation
About Environmental Protection and Growth Management
The mission of the Environmental Protection and Growth Management Department is to safeguard lives, natural resources and property of residents and visitors to the County. This is done by providing for natural resource planning; managing, protecting and planning for appropriate land use patterns and housing mix, establishing an incident command system and emergency operations plans; enforcing environmental, development and construction regulations; and providing for consumer protection. For more information, call 954-357-6612 or visit our website.
About Go Solar Florida
Go SOLAR Florida is a partnership of Florida counties, cities, and the Florida Solar Energy Center who were awarded $1.6 million SunShot Initiative Rooftop Solar Challenge II competitive award to make it easier for Floridians to obtain grid-tied solar installations. Go SOLAR Florida is one of only 8 recipients of a Rooftop Solar Challenge II award nationwide. The purpose of the award is to increase the use of and access to solar energy among the state's residents and businesses by reducing market barriers, lowering non-hardware related installation costs and providing access to financing options over the next two and a half years.
About the Community Power Network
The Community Power Network (CPN) is a network of grassroots, local, state and national organizations working to build and promote locally based renewable energy projects and policies. The Florida Solar United Neighborhoods (FL SUN) Program Director will actively work to establish co-ops, including vetting bids and provide technical and legal support.