Solar Energy

June 30, 2020 | Posted In:

Solar panels collect sunlight and turn it into electricity, providing on-site energy generation and a renewable alternative to fossil fuels. They can be roof- or ground-mounted at homes, businesses, and at solar farms. Unlike fossil fuels, the panels produce no pollutants or emissions while generating electricity. By generating energy at your home or business, solar panels save money by reducing the amount of energy needed from the electric grid. Excess energy can be sold back to the utility, increasing the renewable energy on the electric grid. Studies show that properties with solar have increased property values over those that do not.


Solar Energy Supports a Clean Energy Future

Here in Western North Carolina, our electricity is generated primarily from burning natural gas, a fossil fuel. Reducing our dependence on fossil fuels is an important piece of a cleaner energy future, and solar panels are an integral way to accomplish that. The electricity generated by solar panels is completely emissions-free, keeping our skies and environment cleaner for generations to come. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the average U.S. household emits approximately 20 metric tons of carbon pollution each year. By installing a solar power system, a typical two-person household reduces their carbon emissions by three to four tons annually. 

Solar energy pairs well with battery storage, both at the utility level and individual site level. Since solar panels only generate electricity when the sun is shining, batteries can store surplus energy generated during sunny times for use at night or on cloudier days. 

Another major benefit of going solar in WNC is that solar installations support a growing solar industry here in our region. There are many locally-based solar installers who employ a local workforce, keeping money in our local economy. 

Buncombe County and the City of Asheville have both adopted 100% renewable energy resolutions for the community by 2042. The more solar we install locally, the closer we get to that goal. 


Rebates and Incentives

  • Duke Energy Progress rebate of up to $6,000 for residential customers, $50,000 for business customers, and $75,000 for nonprofit customers. 
  • Federal income tax credit of 26% in 2020, 22% in 2021. It falls to 10% for commercial solar and 0% for residential projects in 2022 and beyond, 


Local Installers and Resources


Links and Videos with More Information

For more detailed information on this technology, we recommend visiting 

  1. Energy Sage 
  2. Motley Fool article – 10 Facts about Solar Panels that Might Surprise You



  1. How Do Solar Panels Work? TED-Ed video
  2. Four Videos to Watch about the Benefits of Solar from Energy Sage