February 1, 2021
Solarize Asheville-Buncombe Seeks Bids From Area Solar Contractors to Bring Affordable Renewable Energy to the Community Via 2021 Group-Purchase Campaign
Asheville, NC — Solarize Asheville-Buncombe, a newly formed local renewable energy coalition, is seeking bids from area solar-energy design and installation companies for its 2021 group-purchasing program for Asheville and Buncombe County property owners. Deadline for bidders is March 2, 2021.
Request for Proposal document is available HERE.
Solarize Asheville-Buncombe is a community-based group-purchasing program for solar energy, battery storage, and other clean-energy technologies. This initiative will help homeowners, businesses, and nonprofits become more resilient, reduce energy expenses, and save on the cost of renewable-energy systems by obtaining volume discounts on materials and installation services. Solarize campaigns are driven by community group purchasing. The more participants who enroll, the greater the savings for all.
Solarize Asheville-Buncombe is seeking competitive bids from the local solar community to ensure best-in-class materials are installed by qualified solar professionals for the lowest price.
“Increasing accessibility to low- and moderate-income families to solar-energy solutions as well as workforce development are key objectives of this campaign,” said Michelle Myers of the Center for Biological Diversity.
“Through this campaign, we have an opportunity to both significantly raise awareness of the benefits of solar energy and to lower the cost to access it by leveraging the power of group purchasing,” said Ken Brame of Sierra Club.
Coalition organizations involved in developing and partnering together to ensure Solarize Asheville-Buncombe is a success include Blue Horizons Project, City of Asheville, Buncombe County, Green Built Alliance, Center for Biological Diversity, Sierra Club – WENOCA, Hood Huggers International, MountainTrue, Umoja Collective, and Solar Crowdsource.
Both the City of Asheville and Buncombe County have adopted a community-wide goal for the entire county to be powered by renewable energy by 2042. Solarize Asheville-Buncombe will help residents and businesses along that path by reducing barriers and costs to solar energy.
Solar energy is clean, makes homes and businesses more climate-resilient, and can stimulate local economic growth. Going solar can also reduce energy and economic burdens for low- and moderate-income (LMI) community members, of which communities of color make up a disproportionate share. In addition to electricity bill savings and increasing renewable energy adoption, It is the intention of this campaign to seek pathways to green jobs for local residents through a workforce-development component, as well as provide deeper cost reductions to LMI community members through fundraising and financing options.
Prospective solar-energy design and installation companies have until March 2, 2021, to submit a bid. A virtual bidder meeting will be held to answer questions about the program- Register HERE. Request for Proposal documents as well as a recording of the bidder meeting can be found HERE.
Throughout the first six to eight months of 2021, Solarize Asheville-Buncombe will offer a series of clean-energy education and outreach events with a goal of increasing participation and encouraging all solar and battery installations to be complete by the end of this year.
“Our goal is to help inform our community about the benefits of solar-energy and battery-storage systems, and make it easy to get a free proposal from a trusted source,” said Sophie Mullinax of Blue Horizons Project. “Then with the power of bulk purchasing, we can achieve volume discounts on materials and installation.”
Solarize Asheville-Buncombe is now accepting advance registrations for the upcoming program. Interested residents may go to solarizeabc.com to learn more about the program and sign up for a free evaluation.
About Solarize Asheville-Buncombe: Solarize Asheville-Buncombe is a campaign forged and supported by a local public-private coalition involving Blue Horizons Project, City of Asheville, Buncombe County, Green Built Alliance, Center for Biological Diversity, Sierra Club – WENOCA, Hood Huggers International, Umoja Collective, MountainTrue, and The Collider, and administered by Solar Crowdsource. Lowering the cost of solar-energy and battery-storage installations through the power of bulk purchasing, reducing contractor acquisition costs, and transferring those savings to the residential and commercial residents is the goal of the campaign, which will launch in April 2021.
About Green Built Alliance:
Green Built Alliance is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit with a 20-year history of advancing sustainability in the built environment through community education, measurable standards and regional action. The membership-based nonprofit is making a difference locally and regionally through numerous community initiatives and resources. The nonprofit makes sustainability more accessible to the surrounding area through its efforts distributing 25,000 copies of the annual Green Building Directory; coordinating the Appalachian Offsets carbon-offsetting program; managing Blue Horizons Project and Energy Savers Network to help create our region’s clean-energy future; and administering green-building certifications such as Green Built Homes. Learn more or get involved by becoming a member or making a donation at greenbuilt.org.