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September 22, 2016

2016 Virginia Wind & Solar Policy

Virginia solar installation A recent blog post from Power for the People VA, “Your 2016 guide to Virginia wind and solar policy,” provides a comprehensive look at the current obstacles and opportunities for renewable energy in the commonwealth. While the General Assembly has taken little or no action on wind & solar energy policies, virtually everyone else – from the Governor to Dominion Power to Virginia schools and universities – has at least started inching in the right direction. As the article states, Virginia made real progress this year. Total renewable capacity is expected to increase by nearly a factor of 10 before the year’s end. Unfortunately, we’re still lagging tremendously far behind neighboring states in both total capacity and the rate of new installations. Author Ivy Main breaks the news into 19 policy areas:
  1. The further we go, the behinder we get
  2. Virginia utilities won’t sell wind or solar to customers* (*except those with billions of dollars and famous CEOs—see section 14)
  3. Community solar? Not hardly
  4. Virginia’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) is a miserable sham
  5. Customer-owned generation: for most, the only game in town
  6. Limits to net metering hamper growth
  7. Aggregated net metering allowed for farms only
  8. Standby charges hobble the market for larger home systems and electric cars
  9. Good news for residential solar: homeowner association bans are largely a thing of the past
  10. Virginia utilities continue their fight against PPAs; now a losing battle?
  11. Tax exemption for third-party owned solar proves a market driver
  12. Dominion “Solar Partnership” Program encounters limited success
  13. Dominion’s Solar Purchase Program: bad for sellers, bad for buyers, and not popular with anyone
  14. Dominion’s Renewable Generation tariff for large users of energy finds no takers; Amazon forces a change, with a new tariff in the works that will be available to others
  15. Dominion moves into utility-scale solar
  16. Governor McAuliffe promises the state will purchase 110 MW of solar
  17. Will a Solar Development Authority help?
  18. Any wind energy yet? Nope, still waiting
  19. The Clean Power Plan tries to make it better to switch than fight

Click here to read the complete article from Power for the People VA

September 13, 2016

Battery Backup System on Steroids

Solar PV panels installed on custom agricultural shed

Working closely with the homeowner, we built a custom agricultural shed using recycled building materials. The shed roof holds 11kW of solar panels.

Once generated, the DC power travels 550 feet underground to the home – where it charges the 48 volt, 811 amp hour battery bank and runs the electrical loads of the house. This system is built to keep its owner in power, from a short power outage to a total grid meltdown.

Interestingly, the owner decided to use high grade US made Deka Unigy II batteries, which have a practical use life of 15 years. Using the 30% tax credit on the first set of batteries helped to justify the higher cost.

Also worth noting is that the customer specified more expensive US made panels and inverters, stating, “I didn’t install the system to make money. I did it because it was the right thing to do.” His good intentions have been rewarded, though: the system has been a very good investment.

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August 30, 2016

Commercial Flower Grower Solar

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This commercial solar installation will provide 100% of the power used in the flower growing operation at Blue Heron Farm in Nelson County, VA. It’s on a smaller scale than some of our other commercial installations, but no less exciting!

Owners Bev and Keith work to protect the environment by using organic practices on the farm. They felt compelled to speak out against the proposed pipeline cutting through their region, and they wanted to make a concrete change in the way they procure energy. They would have installed the system even if the return on investment was not so good. They have also installed a system to generate the electricity used in their home.

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August 23, 2016

Kay Residence

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“We’ve had a great experience with SunDaySolar.  The company did excellent work in maximizing the number of panels for our space, and demonstrated installation skill with our roof type.  SunDaySolar expertly guided us through the available incentives, and when one of our inverters needed a reset, they were out there the next day for us.  Kudos!  and thanks.”  – Jeff Kay

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August 16, 2016

Commercial Ground Mount

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This 36kW ground mounted system was the first of four systems we installed for Cedar Park Storage in Verona, Virginia. In total, CPS has over 75kW of installed photovoltaic (PV) solar. They also have a solar thermal system heating the water for the manager’s apartment and office warehouse complex.

The systems were installed using the REAP Grant, which provides 25% of the system cost back to the owner in cash. Return on invested capital for a system owner is above 25%. Business owners, we offer our grant writing service free of charge!

Please note, in all our systems, the panels are plum, level, ….perfect. We take pride in our craftsmanship.

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