What Is Community Solar and How Does It Work?

A Q&A with Paul McMenemy, President of Solar Generation, about Community Solar Arrays in the Hudson Valley

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What is Solar Generation’s new Community Solar Program?
It’s basically a community solar project. It’s structured to provide folks who don’t have a viable site for solar—either they live in the woods, or they rent, or they live in an apartment, or they don’t want panels on their house, or can’t afford a whole system right now. The concept is to create a model, a subscription model, so anyone can participate in the production of clean energy in our area.

In essence, each subscriber gets a share of the solar production from our arrays. Shares are based on the subscriber’s annual consumption from the last 2 years (in KWH). Solar Generation and Central Hudson will work together to determine the percentages of shares and all backend billing. All participants will see a 10% credit on their monthly Central Hudson bills

Where is the solar energy produced? 
Locally. Solar Generation has built 2 brand new solar array sites in Saugerties and Hannacroix to produce solar energy for the community.

What are the benefits of this program?

  • Create dynamic, renewable energy
  • Bring solar power to the marketplace
  • Make a positive impact on the environment
  • Save money on utilities — 10% credit on monthly bills

Who can participate?
Do you have a Central Hudson account? Then we’re all good. 

Is there a cost to participate? 
There is no upfront cost. There will be a minimal monthly bill from Solar Generation in conjunction with your Central Hudson bill. This part is a bit clunky. It’s how NY state has set up the model, so we have to deal with it for now. The details are:

  • Subscribers will see a line item on their Central Hudson bill for the credit from their solar share.
  • Participants will also receive a bill from SG for 90% of that credit, leaving subscribers with a 10% savings, overall.

Why are you excited about this program?
The whole point is to go renewable as a community, to source energy locally, and to make a positive impact on the environment together.