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Embrace the Renewable Energy Future Whether You Rent or Own

In the battle against climate change, transitioning to clean energy will be essential. But where to begin? If you're looking to support a renewable future, here are five strategies to explore.

Wind Turbines. Photo Credit: Wix Images 2020.

What homeowners can do.

For homeowners, installing solar panels continues to become easier and more affordable. The average solar panel cost for a 3,000-square-foot home is anywhere from $15,000 to $30,000—but the prices for the panels and installation are coming down, especially as competition increases.

Businesses like Tesla, Sungevity, and Vivint now sell a variety of solar panel options for consumers. If the initial cost is a barrier, consider "renting" solar panels over time through groups like Mosaic, EnergySage, and SunRun that provide financing arrangements. In lower-income areas, the nonprofit Grid Alternatives is also working to make clean solar energy affordable and accessible to ensure the clean energy revolution is grounded in equity.

What renters can do.

Neighborhood solar gardens are a new concept in many states, but the idea is that consumers "subscribe" to a solar installation owned by community members. This model provides solar energy to renters, those with shaded roofs, or consumers who can't afford installation of solar panels.

The National Renewable Energy Lab produced a terrific resource outlining how communities can obtain solar through nonprofits and public-private partnerships. For example, XCEL energy in Wisconsin provides this helpful map of local solar community garden opportunities. You can find out if your utility or city is creating community-based solar options by calling them directly.

Read the rest of the article in MindBodyGreen here.

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