Nonprofit Solar Co-Op Helps Small Businesses Go Solar

by Adrian Keller

An effort is underway to help small businesses and households in the Phoenix area go solar together. 

The recently launched Phoenix Metro Solar Co-op uses group purchasing power to offer solar to co-op members at competitive rates. The co-op uses a local solar provider selected by group members in an open bidding process. By joining, small businesses receive guidance from SUN, the independent nonprofit that runs the program. 

We’re excited to help local businesses that want to realize the benefits of going solar through the co-op. Going solar can be a major investment that takes careful consideration. We hope that by joining the co-op, we can help make the process easier and less burdensome.

Recently, more and more companies have turned to solar energy to power their businesses. Energy savings from solar can reduce overhead, and sustainability commitments can influence where customers take their business.

However, some businesses may find the process daunting. Uncertainties over whether a building is right for solar, how to find a contractor, and assessing the qualities of a bid can lead to indecision. SUN’s co-op model seeks to improve the process.

By joining the group, small businesses could save money on the cost of a solar installation. And, thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act, businesses may be able to take the business investment tax credit, which cuts system costs by 30%.

SUN’s co-ops also help grow the solar industry in Arizona. To handle the influx of customers, co-op installers often hire additional staff to create proposals and complete installations for the group. In turn, co-op members often refer their installer to friends and neighbors, generating even more business.

The solar co-op offers an annual opportunity to businesses and individuals to join, but the timing varies from year to year. This year’s deadline is July 7.

Adrian Keller is Arizona program director with Solar United Neighbors.

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