Solar Mosaic: Making Existing Solar Investment Model Obsolete

After finding Solar Mosaic at Shareable, my mind is sufficiently blown away.  Solar Mosaic mashes solar energy with crowdfunding to diversify the burdensome upfront capital requirements across the community.  Quoting Buckminster Fuller, Solar Mosaic believes "You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete."  Based in northern California, the new company creates a marketplace that anyone can use to create solar projects and finance them through their communities, locally and online.

Source: joinmosaic.com

Solar Mosaic recognized that despite the 100% return on capital that solar photo-voltaic installations have, many projects are never started due to the high upfront capital required and long investment recovery period.  Even with the numerous government incentives and gains in technology and scale, only about 1 percent of the US population has adopted the energy source.  Solar Mosaic aims to blow up the old business model by tapping into the power of the shared economy.  The new model creates investment opportunities for individuals or businesses who want to "go solar" but cannot afford to due a full blown project on their own.  The investments are sold in units, called tiles, which represent a $100 share of a community solar project.  The project improves the efficiency and adoption rate of solar by diversifying the capital burden and optimizing the placement of solar arrays where the energy can be captured most effectively, like schools or hospitals.  Investors are compensated with the savings and earnings from renewable energy generation over time. (Note: I use the word investors/investment quite loosely as the company actually refers to tile purchasers more exclusively.)

Currently, there are two solar projects in California: a 140 kilowatt array in Oakland that is projected to save $350,000 over 20 years and an ongoing series of installations in Richmond that will create jobs for local graduates of a green jobs training program.

Anyone can host a new project or invest in one, so check out Solar Mosaic online.

Link to blog post at Shareable.

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