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PowerUp Ecology Action Center

PowerUp with Community Solar

Did you know that only about 50% of homes and businesses in the U.S. are able to host a solar array? According to a 2015 report by the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Lab, this is due to lack of available space, or the fact that the building occupant is renting the space and does not have ownership of the roof.

If you cannot host a solar array at your home or business, but want to offset your electricity usage with solar energy, community solar may be for you. Through community solar, multiple electric utility customers subscribe to a single community solar array and their share of the energy generated from the array is subtracted from their energy bill.

About Community Solar ShineMines

StraightUp Solar is planning to build several community solar arrays, affectionately called ShineMines™, throughout Central and Southern Illinois. Starting in Spring of 2019, StraightUp Solar will offer ShineMine subscriptions to Ameren Illinois utility customers, including those who are participating in their local municipal electricity aggregation program.

By subscribing to a community ShineMine, you’ll support the development of renewable solar power and local jobs throughout Central and Southern Illinois. You may also be able to save electricity on your home or business’ electric bills. The amount of cost savings will be determined by the difference in cost per kilowatt-hour, or unit of electricity, between your current electric supply rate and the rate offered by the ShineMine.

How is it possible to receive the benefits of solar energy from a solar array located miles away?

This is possible through a billing policy offered by Ameren Illinois called Virtual Net Metering, which allows you to earn credits on your electric bill for each unit of solar electricity produced by the community solar array. Should you choose to subscribe to a community solar array, the value of net metering credits will depend on your energy supply rate. There may be a lag of 1-2 billing cycles before net metering credits begin to appear on your electric bill.

About the PowerUp EAC Program

This winter, StraightUp Solar has engaged with the Ecology Action Center to educate EAC supporters like you about community solar subscriptions. Through this partnership, we aim to develop a core group of educated community solar consumers in the McLean County community who are able to in turn educate their friends and family. In the coming weeks, you will learn more about community solar through EAC newsletters and social media.

StraightUp Solar will make a special PowerUp donation to the EAC for each ShineMine subscriber who enrolls during this early stage of the program.

Show your support for solar energy development and the Ecology Action Center by signing up to reserve your community solar subscription in the form of a non-binding Letter of Intent (LOI).

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