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Going Green from the Green

Monday, January 23, 2017

Going Green from the Green-Tom Watson

Hall of Fame Golfer Tom Watson Installs Mitsubishi Electric Solar Panels on his Hawaiian Home

Hualalai, HI – January 17, 2017 – Mitsubishi Electric US, Inc. Ambassador Tom Watson has saved more than $15,000 in electricity costs since installing solar on his Hawaiian home in February 2016 and is on track to meet an expected $16,000 in savings in the first year. The pro-golfer installed a 25.4kW system consisting of ninety six Mitsubishi MLE 265 modules and six SolarEdge inverters. The installation demonstrates Watson’s commitment to the environment.

“The impact of the Mitsubishi Electric PV system on my home in Hawaii has been significant. It has provided measurable cost savings and I feel good about this commitment to sustainability. I would recommend working with Mitsubishi Electric for all your solar needs,” said Tom Watson, Hall of Fame golfer.

“I live some months a year in a place where the sun shines bright. It would be foolish not to take advantage of the natural sunlight. It only makes sense to put solar panels on our roof. It’s practical, sustainable and saves us money. And I trust Mitsubishi Electric to supply excellent products, something I know a little bit about,” continued Watson.

The PV system is estimated to produce 41,865 kWh annually which will prevent an estimated 32.4 tons of CO2 from entering the atmosphere. Over the next 25 years, the clean energy produced is equal to offsetting CO2 emissions from burning 784,894 pounds of coal.

Watson, a Mitsubishi Electric Ambassador since 2015, is competing in the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai this week January 17-21, 2017. The system was installed by Sunetric based in Kailua, HI.

For more information about Mitsubishi Electric Solar products and to find out how you may save $300 on a Mitsubishi Electric PV installation, please visit http://www.mitsubishielectricsolar.com/products/residential/count_on_me/ Additional terms and conditions apply and are available via this hyperlink.

About Mitsubishi Electric US, Inc. Photovoltaic Division

Mitsubishi Electric designs, engineers and manufactures high quality solar panels to deliver clean, reliable energy to its customers throughout the world. With more than 90 years of electronics manufacturing expertise and 40 years’ experience developing solar power technology, Mitsubishi Electric is one of the most established solar providers in the industry. Residential, commercial, and government customers can count on the company’s 25-year limited warranty to optimize their return on investment. Additional information is available at www.MitsubishiElectricSolar.com or by calling 714.236.6137. Connect with Mitsubishi Electric Solar on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

In addition to solar modules, Mitsubishi Electric US group companies’ principal businesses include semiconductor devices, automotive electrical components, elevators and escalators, factory automation products and services, heating and cooling products, electric utility products, and large-scale video displays for stadiums and arenas. Mitsubishi Electric US group companies have roughly 50 locations throughout North America with approximately 4,000 employees.

3 Simple Questions to Ask Before Going Solar

Thursday, May 14, 2015

SunPower PicIf you’re thinking about solar power for your home, you already know it can cut energy costs. But did you know that not all solar technology is equal? Get three simple questions to ask when you’re shopping for solar. Learn more with this informative video from SunPower. Click Here

Clean Energy Updates

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

rooftop“We know how important an option rooftop PV is for our customers, and we’re continuing to perform the necessary technical reviews and process rooftop solar applications as quickly as possible,” Darren Pai, HECO spokesman, said in an email Monday. “We’re also working on technical solutions and upgrades so more customers can get the benefits of rooftop PV in a way that ensures safe, reliable electric service.” To read the entire article go to Honolulu Star-Adviser.

Hawaii Votes to Go 100% Renewable

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Hawaii is moving to become the first U.S. state to employ 100% renewable electricity. House Bill 623, approved by the state legislature yesterday, puts in place a requirement for all the islands’ electricity to come from renewable sources by the end of 2045. The bill is expected to be signed by Governor Ige. Read the full article on IEEE Spectrum. Solar panels and wind turbines

Refer a Friend in May and Receive $500!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Sunetric Referral Program

In honor of Lei Day — one of our favorite holidays — we’ve brought back our popular refer-a-friend program for the month of May. This month only, if you refer a friend to Sunetric who purchases or leases a PV system in 2015, you’ll receive $500!

This offer is open to EVERYONE, not just current Sunetric customers. Residents of all islands are eligible (sorry, no commercial customers). Maybe your neighbor has shown interest in going solar, or a coworker is looking for ways to save on energy costs. Now’s the perfect time to refer them to us!

Show your aloha spirit and help keep Hawaii on top as the state that gets the highest percentage of electricity from solar.

Click here to refer a friend today!

Go Solar for No Money Down!

no money down sunpower lease

Solar Jobs Are on the Rise

Monday, February 24, 2014

The latest numbers are out about solar jobs, and they just another indicator that the solar industry is heating up. In 2013, employment in the U.S. solar industry grew by 20% compared to 2012—that’s 10 times faster than the national average employment rate—according to The Solar Foundation (TSF), an independent nonprofit solar research and education organization. And it’s projected to grow by 15.6% in 2014. Here are the rest of the numbers:

Sunetric_Solar_jobs

10 Years of Solar, by the Numbers

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

As we continue to celebrate Sunetric’s tenth anniversary, we took some time to reflect over the progress we’ve made over the last decade. Check out some of our accomplishments below — we couldn’t have done any of it without the people and businesses of Hawaii, who are overwhelmingly supportive of clean, solar energy.

Sunetric_Turns_10

The Voice Behind the Anti-Solar Agenda

Monday, February 10, 2014

Photo Credit: Takver via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: Takver via Compfight cc

Depending on where you live, you may or may not be aware of the work solar energy supporters have had to do lately to preserve their access to affordable solar energy in their states. In many states, the issue is net metering, which gives solar customers a credit for energy they send to the grid. This energy is used to serve nearby customers during peak energy load times.

As the number of solar customers has grown, utilities have begun to argue that net metering means that solar customers aren’t paying their share of the costs of maintaining and updating the power grid, shifting those costs to non-solar customers. The solar industry, on the other hand, argues that the boost from solar customers helps utilities meet peak demand, reduces the need for costly transmission lines and cuts air pollution from power plants.

Last year, a heated fight between Arizona’s solar industry and its main electric utility ended in a compromise: New solar customers will now pay a monthly fee of about $5, far less than the $40 to $50 the utility was pushing for. Arizona is just the beginning; in the more than 40 states that have net metering policies in place, almost all of them are under scrutiny, according to The New York Times.

It turns out these attacks on solar are the work of a nonprofit group of corporations, conservative activists, and lawmakers known as the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which has been called a “stealth business lobbyist” by The New York Times. Documents obtained by The Guardian in December revealed the group’s strategy to block clean energy development by promoting “legislation with goals ranging from penalizing individual homeowners and weakening state clean energy regulations, to blocking the Environmental Protection Agency, which is Barack Obama’s main channel for climate action.”

After what was seen as a defeat for ALEC in Arizona, the battle has moved to Colorado, where Xcel Energy, the local utility company, is trying to convince the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to limit net metering for its customers.

The bottom line is that voters need to make their voices heard. Arizonians did a good job of mobilizing and containing the efforts by the utility there. If you’re a current solar customer — or interested in becoming one in the future — we encourage you to watch these issues in your state and contact your representatives and show your support for clean energy policies. If we want to keep moving forward to a clean energy future, we need less barriers, not more, for new customers.

Sunetric Turns 10!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Sunetric Turns 10

Sunetric has just reached a huge milestone—we just reached our 10th anniversary. That’s right, we’ve been bringing solar power to homes and businesses in Hawaii and on the mainland for a decade now, and we’re very grateful to our customers for keeping our renewable energy business strong and growing.

Sunetric was founded in Hawaii in 2004 by 25-year-old Sean Mullen and his future wife Beth-Ann, idealistic adventurers who wanted to leave the world better than they found it. In just 10 short years, the company has grown from a startup focusing on residential photovoltaic and hot water installations to one of the country’s largest renewable energy firms with satellite offices in Denver, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, and Pittsburgh.

Over the past decade, Sunetric has installed 190,000 solar 
modules—that’s 180 miles of solar.

These residential solar, commercial solar, and federal/military solar projects range from home solar installations to jobs at Air Force bases, hospitals, resorts, military housing, and breweries—you name it, we’ve equipped it with renewable energy. And we’ve been deeply honored to earn several awards along the way, like inclusion in the Inc. 5000 List of the nation’s fastest-growing companies for the last two years. The Honolulu Star Advertiser named Sunetric Hawaii’s Best Solar Company three of the last four years, and we’ve been part of Hawaii Business’ Top 250 for four years.

But our most important accomplishment this decade has been building a roster of great customers and a staff who is passionate about solar power.

Together, we’ve prevented over 21 million pounds of CO2 emissions!

Reflecting on where we started and how far we’ve come has us feeling honored and excited for the next 10 years. With a warming planet, dwindling energy sources, and rising fuel prices, we can’t afford to slow down!

Solar Wins at Super Bowl XLVIII

Monday, January 27, 2014

MetLife Stadium

Photo Credit: picturesofyou- via Compfight cc

The turf isn’t the only thing that will be green as the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos face off in this year’s Super Bowl at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. Green energy will be a star player in the game’s environmental program; New Jersey utility Public Service Electric & Gas (PSE&G) will be purchasing solar renewable energy credits (SRECs) to offset the energy used to power the big event.

For every megawatt hour of electricity used by the stadium itself—plus a host of peripheral facilities, including the teams’ hotels and an attraction-laden “Super Bowl Boulevard” in New York City’s Times Square—PSE&G will purchase and retire one renewable energy credit (REC) on behalf of Super Bowl XLVIII. The credits will include enough New Jersey solar renewable energy credits (SRECs) to equal a four-week output at Kearny Solar Farm, a solar farm built on a former landfill located about 10 miles from the stadium. Additional RECs will be purchased to source power from the Jersey-Atlantic City Wind Farm, New Jersey’s largest commercial grade wind farm.

“By purchasing wind and solar RECs locally PSEG has added more value to this project,” said Jack Groh, Director of the NFL Environmental Program. “In addition to providing green energy, purchasing locally puts money into the local economy and can help finance construction of additional renewable energy capacity in the region – something that will have a lasting impact beyond Super Bowl XLVIII.”

Part of that legacy includes improved air quality for the next generation of athletes – something every community should be excited to support. No matter which team comes out on top on Sunday, the event will be a win for solar and renewable energy.

Celebrate National ‘Shout Out for Solar’ Day With Us!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Here at Sunetric, we shout for solar every day, but this week, we’re shouting a lot louder—and we’re hoping you’ll join us.

Sunetric Employees Celebrating National ‘Shout Out for Solar’ Day!

Sunetric Employees Celebrating National Solar Shout Out Day!

The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) is celebrating its 40th anniversary by organizing National “Shout Out for Solar” Day on January 24. It’s your chance to show your support for solar — along with a hundreds of thousands of supporters around the world — on Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms.

It turns out there’s a lot to shout about. It’s estimated that the U.S. now has 13 gigawatts of installed solar capacity – enough to power more than 2 million American homes. Solar is expected to be the top renewable source of electricity in the U.S. in 2013 when all the numbers come in. And experts are forecasting 30 percent growth in 2014. Part of this unprecedented growth is due to the fact that solar is more affordable than ever — the average price of a solar system has dropped by more than 50 percent since 2010!

Sunetric is proud to be on the forefront of this exciting swing toward renewable energy. Today, there are nearly 120,000 Americans employed by the U.S. solar industry at more than 6,100 American companies, and we’re happy to be among them. That’s why we’re giving a big “Shout Out for Solar.” Will you join us?

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Here’s How to #GoSolar on January 24!
1. Download and print out one of these signs or make your own.
2. Take a picture with your sign.
3. Upload your picture to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and use the hashtag #GoSolar. 


You can follow along and see all the photos on Storify.

You can also join the SEIA’s Thunderclap so your tweet or post goes out at the same time as everyone else’s on January 24!

We’ll be posting #GoSolar photos from our employees all day on Facebook and Twitter. Tag Sunetric if you join us!

Obama’s New Goals for Renewable Energy

Thursday, January 16, 2014

President Barack ObamaPresident Barack Obama has been showing strong leadership around renewable energy recently. In December, he ordered the U.S. government to almost triple its renewables use in the next six years, and, last week, he instituted a comprehensive review of the nation’s energy infrastructure to happen every four years.

The directive Obama made last month requires each federal agency to make renewable energy—be it solar, wind, hydro-electric, or otherwise—20% of the government’s energy supply by 2020.

“In order to create a clean energy economy that will increase our Nation’s prosperity, promote energy security, combat climate change, protect the interests of taxpayers, and safeguard the health of our environment, the Federal Government must lead by example,” wrote Obama in a memorandum.

The memo laid out a plan for scaling up to no less than 10% renewable energy by 2015, 15% by 2016, 17.5% by 2018, and 20% thereafter.

A previous directive, issued in 2005, mandated that renewables account for 7.5 percent by 2013, which a White House spokeswoman said the government is on track to accomplish, according to The Washington Post.

Obama’s plan mirrors the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative (HCEI), which sets a goal of reaching 70% clean energy by 2030, 40% of which would come from locally generated clean energy sources.

Last week, Obama also ordered a quadrennial study of the country’s energy infrastructure in order to “identify opportunities and challenges in advance by studying U.S. energy supply, markets and infrastructure, plus potential threats like cyber threats and climate change,” reported the Associated Press. The first report, with recommendations, would be due January 31, 2015.

Solar energy promises to play a big part in reaching these goals. Rhone Resch, President and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association, responded to the news by saying, “As the fastest growing energy source in the U.S. today, as well as our nation’s most abundant energy resource, solar—both centralized and distributed—will influence the structure of our grid, while combating climate change, enhancing emergency preparedness, creating new jobs and boosting our economy.”

These bold plans are exciting to hear from our president and set a great example for the country. We’re looking forward to helping the government reach the goal of bolstering its renewable energy use through solar-generated power.

SRECs: A Solar Investment That Really Pays You Back

Friday, January 10, 2014

Wouldn’t it be wonderful to earn some money without lifting a finger?

That dream can become a reality for property owners who invest in solar technology. In some states, when you install a solar photovoltaic system and start generating power, you can earn money back from the local utility company in the form of Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs , pronounced “Ess-Rex”).

Over time, these credits—which are traded in their own market (you can go through a broker to make the process easier)—will help offset the initial cost of your investment. An average residential system might earn 5–7 credits each year, and credits can range in value from $150-$600 or so, which translates to a significant savings for property owners. New Jersey is one of the fastest-growing markets for PV in the country; you can see average values for SRECs over the past few years here.

Here’s a map of the current and potential SREC states:

States that offer SCECs Keep in mind that the money you can earn from SRECs is in addition to any other federal or state credits that may be available. All together, these incentives can make solar systems an affordable proposition for property owners.

So How Does It Work?
The process varies slightly by state, but generally solar-project owners register their systems, and once they are approved, owners earn an SREC each time their installation generates 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity. Electricity suppliers in these states are mandated to meet certain renewable-energy standards, and purchasing SRECs from individual project owners is an easy way for them to meet those requirements. It’s a win/win for both utility companies and solar-project owners.

We can help you understand what’s involved, from the initial investment to finding an SREC broker. Contact Sunetric to find out more.

Community Solar and Public Housing: A Perfect Fit

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

New carport solar arrays at Clarenden Street Apartments in San Jose, Calif. will help this public housing complex fix costs and save money.

New carport solar arrays at Clarenden Street Apartments in San Jose, Calif. will help this public housing complex fix costs and save money.

At Sunetric, we’re proud of all of our solar projects, but there are a few that make us smile just a little wider. We recently finished installing a state-of-the-art solar array on carports in a newly renovated affordable housing complex in San Jose, Calif.

It’s an example of a fairly new concept in solar power: the community solar garden. Community solar is when a group of residents take energy from a solar array through virtual net metering without having panels installed on their rooftops. Instead, the panels can be nearby on carports or miles away in a formerly vacant lot.

In the case of the Clarendon Street Apartments, formerly known as Villa Garcia public housing complex, the power generated from the carport solar array goes straight to the grid and the complex gets credit for it to use against electricity bills. The 182 kW system consists of 72 panels, monitors usage in each of the complex’s 80 units, and is estimated to save $48,000 annually.

Through forward thinking, this low-income housing complex is now being helped to fix costs and save money by acquiring energy from the sun, impacting the community and tax-paying supporters for years to come.

Clarendon Street Apartments carport solar array installation in progress

Clarendon Street Apartments carport solar array installation in progress

The solar project is one part of a plan that gave new life to this formerly foreclosed federal housing complex. New roofs, floors, plumbing, electrical and landscaping were also installed. With abundant sunshine in San Jose, the project should see a return on investment quickly.

For this project, we used solar arrays that integrate innovative micro-inverter technology, which means a disruption on one solar panel from a bit of shade, debris or snow won’t diminish the output of the whole system. With conventional central inverters, when one panel is compromised, the whole array’s output is affected.

The Clarendon Street Apartments project is a great example of how solar isn’t just for homeowners who can afford the upfront expenses. We’d like to thank Josiah Denmark of the Housing Authority of the County of Santa Clara for spearheading this project and thinking creatively about how to use community solar and net metering in his community.

Residents now have solar power and shade for their cars!

Residents now have solar power and shade for their cars!