With Community Solar, Going Green Has Gone Viral
If you haven’t noticed lately, community solar is becoming the new thing when it comes to going green. But why is the community solar movement going viral? There are many reasons. Below are just a few.
1. Community Solar is a Great Option for People Not Wanting to Install Solar Panels to Their Home
- Maybe you’re an environmentally conscious user. You’ve trashed the straws and want to go solar, but you just can’t afford it or have too much shade around your home. Or maybe you’re not a homeowner or your yard isn’t big enough to obtain a ground mount. In all of these circumstances, community solar is the perfect alternative.
2. Lock in Your Rate With Community Solar!
- Members are able to lock in their generation and transmission (G&T) rate. Benjamin Franklin once said, “Nothing is certain except death and taxes.” However, we think Franklin forgot one: It’s also certain that the price of just about all of life’s goods and services will eventually go up.
- Although GVEC rates do sometimes go up, we work hard to keep them down. With SunHub, GVEC’s community solar program, you’re guaranteed that your G&T rate is locked in and will not change regardless of any change to GVEC’s general G&T for up to one year.
3. Texas is Known for Harnessing the Sun
- We live in a place where there is sunshine almost all the time, which is ideal for the generation of solar power. You get to spend your time embracing the sunshine with exciting outdoor activities like tubing, hiking, etc. while the solar farms helps reduce carbon emissions in the atmosphere. It’s a win, win!
4. With Community Solar Programs Like SunHub, Co-op’s Can Generate Their Own Power Supply
- Why is it important for a co-op like GVEC to generate its own power? Think of it like getting a broken garage door fixed. When you hire Chuck’s Garage Door Repair, you pay a third-party to fix your garage, meaning you’re paying for both the garage door parts and Chuck’s labor costs. But what if you repair the door yourself and only pay for the parts? Assuming you can do the work, there’s potential to save big money on labor costs, which are typically far higher than the cost of parts.
- The situation is similar in regards to co-ops and power generation & transmission. Generally speaking, co-ops traditionally buy power from third-party suppliers and sell it to their members at wholesale. When a co-op generates a portion of their own power, they essentially cut out the middle-man and are able to save on charges they would otherwise incur.
5. Lower Usage During Peak Times Can Also Help to Lower Third-party Power Costs, Which Can Reduce Standard G&T Rates
- Similar to how there are peak times for traffic, energy also has peak times for usage. Typically, the peak time for energy usage falls between 2pm and 6pm. This is especially important because our SunHub Generation Station is pouring the electricity it generates onto the grid. This can save members money in the long term since it helps lower transmission costs overall.
- The capability to put power onto the local distribution grid, as opposed to only purchasing it from other generators via the transmission system, lowers GVEC’s demand during ERCOT’s Four Coincident Peaks (highest points of demand)—June, July, August and September—which is how the PUCT (Public Utility Commission of Texas) determines how much the transmission costs that will get allocated to GVEC and other utilities will be. The lower we can keep overall demand at those peak times, the lower GVEC member-owners will pay for wholesale power year-round.
- Our Rush Hour Rewards (RHR) program can also contribute to lowering G&T costs. Visit our Rush Hour Rewards page to learn more about that program.
What is GVEC’s Version of Community Solar?
Let’s start with the basics: our SunHub Generation Station is located between Gonzales and Seguin. It has 6,500 solar panels, delivering 4 million kWh per year. We offer live energy-production stats from our generation station, too. The stats show how the energy produced translates into day-to-day conservation efforts. If you want to support clean, renewable energy that’s locally sourced, SunHub may be the option for you!
Now’s the time to sign-up for SunHub™ Community Solar. It’s free to enroll and there’s no contract, so you can opt out at any time. What are you waiting for? Sign up today!