Is Solar Right For Your Business?
When you’re shopping for an energy supplier, the first step is to determine what your business needs: natural gas, electricity or a combination of both.
If you are looking for more than one option, selecting a supplier who can supply all of your commodities is an efficient choice for streamlining energy management and maximizing potential savings.
You’ll also want to consider whether it’s important for your business to use energy from renewable sources. This is a question of growing importance, particularly for consumer-oriented firms, higher education institutions and companies looking to demonstrate their commitment to the environment.
Among renewable energy options, solar continues to grow in popularity.
"Solar continues to be a cost-effective energy option for large businesses," said Centrica Business Solutions product manager Nick Hanson. "With the Investment Tax Credit for solar systems still in place and installed costs continuing their decline, now is a great time for businesses to invest."
According to a recent analysis produced by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the U.S. installed a total of 14,762 megawatts (MW) of solar in 2016, nearly double the capacity it installed in 2015.
The incentive tax credit (ITC) for solar systems has been a major driver in U.S. solar growth. The ITC — which was extended through 2019 — is a 30 percent tax credit for solar systems on residential and commercial properties, offering homes and businesses cost-effective clean power and more price certainty. Given the popularity of the tax credit, GTM Research estimates the new extension will help drive a whopping $130 billion in total investment in solar systems.
If you think solar might be right for your business, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you have a documented energy management strategy?
- Do you have sustainability goals?
- Would volatile energy prices put your budget at risk?
- Will your business benefit from price certainty?
- How about solar’s affordability and tax incentives?
- Will it grow customer loyalty and boost public image?
If you answered “yes” to one or more, then solar may be right for your business.