Over the last years the Bay Area was definitely a game-changer for the whole green energy industry. A lot of Silicon Valley companies implemented newest solar technologies to make their businesses more sustainable. Change has happened in all different levels, from inventing better ways of harvesting solar energy in cities to making these technologies cheaper and simplifying distribution chains. The solar industry saw 20 % growth in jobs in 2013, as a research by the Solar Foundation indicates. One-third of Americans who work in the solar industry live in California. Renewable-energy technologies create more construction, manufacturing and installation jobs than coal or natural gas. Below is the overview of the most innovative California-based firms that bring solar technology to the world.
CivicSolar: Innovation in Distribution CivicSolar is an innovative solar distributor, online marketplace partnering with installers and developers in North America, according to the information provided through the Crunchbase. Its distribution model allows it to negotiate costs directly with global manufacturers on behalf of its customers and help them save. CivicSolar provides the engineering experience, installation know-how and web tools to help a customer find the right equipment for every job.
SolarCity: Solar Power Subscription Model SolarCity is America’s #1 full-service solar provider. Over 68,000 homeowners take advantage of SolarCity unique business model. The company designs custom solar systems for homes and then charges for the energy monthly in a form of utility bill. The cost of electricity is lower, and homeowners can enjoy benefits of solar systems that allow selling extras to neighbors. The company monitors system and takes care of power panels insuring life-time warranty of a contract.
Sungevity: Online Tracking of Energy Production and Consumption Sungevity is an Oakland-based developer of top-notch rooftop solar systems with a business-model similar to SolarCity’s one. The company makes a custom solar roof system, installs it at no cost and then charges monthly under the 20-year Solar Lease agreement. Sungevity has online tracking tools that help to watch the energy production 24/7.
SolarNexus: Smart Software to Enhance Solar Works SolarNexus creates software solutions that improve profitability for participants throughout the solar deployment value chain, including installers, integrators, manufacturers, distributors, financing providers, and customers. The application enables streamlined business management processes for its users and enables information sharing across the solar deployment chain. For example, it eliminates manual and repetitive tasks such as recording customer information in different formats at various phases of a project.
SolarMosaic: Solar Projects Investment Platform Solar is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. SolarMosaic is an online platform that helps investors earn funding solar projects. Already, thousands of people from across the United States have invested millions of dollars to finance solar projects through Mosaic’s online marketplace. Some interesting facts about solar industry:
- According to One Block of the Grid, the average homeowner saves $1217.63 a year on electricity by going solar.
- Solar energy is a completely renewable resource, unlike coal, oil and gas. And it provides 6,000 times more energy in just one day than the earth needs for a whole year, according to Sungevity website.
- The average solar system (panels and installation) costs between $10,000 and $20,000, but tax incentives can bring the price down.