Sol Systems, a national solar energy company focused on developing and operating renewable energy projects with community impact in the United States, has announced a unique renewable energy procurement and investment strategy with Google that aims to develop new solar energy projects and supports local communities where the projects are built.
Sol Systems and Google have structured an integrated clean energy investment and procurement strategy for solar projects being developed by Pine Gate Renewables in North and South Carolina. This strategy provides capital to enable 225 MWdc of new solar energy projects and 18 MW of battery storage resources. These assets are being developed in a region with relatively low renewable energy penetration and of specific focus for Google and its 24/7 carbon-free energy goal.
Alongside this investment, Google and Sol Systems will deploy capital to seed critical investments into regional community organisations that serve under-resourced and minority communities. The investment will focus on reducing energy burden by enabling critical home pre-weatherisation and safety upgrades to low- and moderate-income (LMI) households. Four regional organisations will receive initial funding from the partnership: Roanoke Electric Cooperative (NC), Santee Electric Cooperative (SC), Aiken Electric Cooperative (SC), and the Sustainability Institute of South Carolina.
“We are honored to be working with Google, a pioneer in renewable energy procurement and community investment,” said Sol Systems’ CEO, Yuri Horwitz. “As they have in the past, they continue to provide leadership and innovation for our industry. We look forward to building on this work in the future.”
“By 2030, we are aiming for every Google data centre to operate on clean energy every hour of every day. As we work toward this goal, we are committed to ensuring that the communities where we operate are actively benefiting from the clean energy transition,” said Christopher Scott, energy lead at Google. “We are excited to partner with Sol Systems to not only bring new solar projects online to one of the most difficult grids to decarbonise but also work with them to help lower the energy burden in under-resourced communities through the clean energy transition.”
“The Sustainability Institute is thrilled to partner with Sol Systems and Google to provide critical home repairs alongside energy efficiency upgrades for households in under-resourced communities in the Charleston area. The investments from the impact funding will result in homes becoming safer and more energy efficient for families and will help reduce energy burden and insecurity in the communities where it is highest,” stated Bryan Cordell, Executive Director, The Sustainability Institute of South Carolina.
“Santee Electric Cooperative is excited to partner with Sol Systems and Google to grow our ‘Help My House‘ program. The ‘Help My House’ program enables homeowners to apply for funding to finance energy efficiency improvements, lowering their power bills. Through the new partnership with Sol Systems and Google, SEC will provide funding to support low-income households participating in the ‘Help My House’ program to address relevant critical home repairs and energy efficiency improvements. Together, we are working towards a common goal of electrifying home appliances to transition away from kerosene and propane. As a result, homes will be more efficient, use less energy, and have better air quality and health. This partnership will enable us to expand our reach in helping the communities and families we serve,” said Jay Kirby, VP of public affairs, Santee Electric Cooperative.