Community Solar

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You can now go solar without installing panels on your property!

Our community solar garden lets you share in the benefits of solar power, even if you can't install panels on your property because you need a new roof or because of neighborhood restrictions.

Our first solar garden is located at our Strawberry substation on Cypress Gardens Road in Moncks Corner. Participating members will be credited with a portion of the output from the solar garden based on the number of panels leased which will be applied toward their monthly electric usage. Our second community solar garden will feature canopy-mounted solar panels on covered parking at our Awendaw district office.

(Our community solar program is currently fully leased. Please check with the program administrator about availability.)

What is Community Solar

Solar communities are groups of solar panels installed at one location. They offer you a solar energy option. This means you get a credit on your bill for the solar energy generated without needing to have equipment attached to your home.

So why go Community Solar?

  1. It’s hassle free. No holes in your roof.
  2. No system to set up and maintain.
  3. The co-op assumes all liabilities and maintenance of the solar system.
  4. No burdensome homeowner association restrictions.
  5. Subscriptions are transferable.
  6. Community Solar creates clean energy that’s environmentally friendly.
How it works
  1. Decide how many blocks of solar power are right for you. If you’d like more Community Solar later and it is available, you can select additional blocks.
  2. Complete the subscription agreement. Then pay a one-time $20 sign-up (administrative) fee and $20 per block upfront fee (limit 5 blocks). Members will then pay a monthly charge of $10 per block for 8 years and receive the credit value of solar for 15 years.
  3. Once you’re a Community Solar participant, you will be notified when the solar farm is up and running.
  4. Start receiving solar energy credits on your monthly electric bill. Each month you will receive credit for a portion of the production from the Community Solar farm. Your portion is based on how many solar blocks you have selected.

You subscribe to the output from the co-op’s Community Solar site for a 15-year period. Choose the number of blocks you would like.

You can add more blocks at any time, as long as they are available. Once energy production begins, each month you will receive credit for a portion of the production from the Community Solar farm, based on the number of blocks you have chosen. You pay a portion of the cost per block upfront, and the remainder of the cost is paid in a monthly charge. The output of those blocks is credited back to you on a cents-per-kilowatt-hour (kWh) basis. You pay a one-time fee to cover administrative costs.

Pricing
  • One-time administrative fee: $20
  • UPFRONT CHARGE: $20 per block
  • MONTHLY CHARGE: $10 per block
  • MONTHLY CREDIT: ~5.5¢ credit per kWh*

(*varies based on the calculated annual value of solar)

For example, if a member subscribes to the 5-block maximum, the initial charge will be $120 ($20 administrative, $20 upfront per block x 5 = $100). After the initial sign-up, the member would be charged $50 per month ($10 per block x 5). The member would then receive credit for their portion (5 blocks) of the total energy output for the entire solar garden for the month.

How much do I need?
The average residential member uses approximately 1,236 kWh per month. (The following examples show the percent of an average home's monthly use)
  • 1 block = 150 kWh = 12% of monthly use
  • 2 blocks = 300 kWh = 24%
  • 3 blocks = 450 kWh = 36%
  • 4 blocks = 600 kWh = 49%
  • 5 blocks = 750 kWh = 61%

Please note: these figures are only averages; solar energy production will fluctuate month to month based on weather and time of year.

Who can participate? What if I move?
Any residential member* may participate in the Community Solar program on a first-come, first-served basis.

If you move to another home served by the co-op, the solar energy subscription moves with you. If you move out of the co-op’s service area, the subscription will be re-marketed by the co-op. However, the upfront charge paid when beginning the program is not refundable.

*currently not available to members enrolled in pre-paid billing

Am I buying or leasing? Are there limits?
This is a subscription-based program where members are credited with the energy produced by the solar garden in blocks of kilowatt-hours (kWh). You do not own the panels themselves.

The overall program term is 15 years. The minimum term participation is 2 months, and requires a 30-day notice of cancellation.

The minimum subscription is 1 block. The maximum is 5 blocks, or 16 panels.

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Berkeley Electric Cooperative is an equal opportunity provider and employer.