Go Green Now is an initiative to help bring awareness to the
benefits of renewable energy. We have partnered with Run
On Solar to work to help Colorado and many other states
households and Organizations gain access to clean and
renewable energy without having to put solar panels on their
roofs. Run On Solar is the #1 community solar sales force in
America. Having clean energy for all means living a longer
more sustainable way of life, what better way to provide that
than community solar. We strive to bring community solar
across the nation to all homes in areas with solar programs
States we are licensed to sell in:
Colorado, Massachusetts, Maryland, District of Columbia,
Illinois, Maine, New Jersey, Delaware, Rhode Island,
Minnesota, New York, Virginia and New Mexico
Coming soon: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Michigan, Missouri,
Mississippi, Ohio and Wisconsin
What Is It?
Community solar is for people who want to go solar but can’t or don’t
want to put panels on their roof. We build large solar projects called
community solar gardens with thousands of panels. You subscribe to
a portion of the energy produced in the community solar garden along
with many other residents who share your commitment to renewable
energy, replacing the need to invest in solar panels for home use.
Your utility continues delivering your energy, and you become part of
the solar community, receiving solar credits on your electricity bill.
The solar gardens add clean energy to the grid. You subscribe to a
portion of that energy, and your utility buys your portion from you. No
roof. No equipment. No upfront costs. No hassle.
How It Works
Community solar is a free program for everyone that allows you to pull solar energy from one of our solar gardens and receive a discount on your electric bill without having to install anything on the property.
What is a Solar Garden?
Community Solar Gardens are centrally-located solar photovoltaic (PV) systems
that provide electricity to participating subscribers. Due to their large size, they
are able to serve sometimes thousands of subscribers.
How it started
When it comes to renewable energy targets, states know that in order to
meet their goals, one of the most effective things they can do is ensure the
greatest possible access to solar technologies. However, only a small
portion of people can get rooftop panels. Renters; those in apartments,
townhouses, or condos; those with unsuitable roofs; and those who simply
don’t want to invest $30,000-$40,000 in rooftop panels are all excluded
from the option of rooftop solar. Roof top solar also reduces the value of a
In 2010, the State of Colorado passed the nationally first-of-its kind
Community Solar Gardens Act (HB 1342) to encourage the development of
solar gardens so more people can choose solar energy where they
previously couldn’t. Now, community solar has spread to 34 states,
including Minnesota, and counting!
At the same time, consumers who may not qualify for rooftop solar still
want a say in the source of electricity they are buying. And more and more,
they want clean, green local energy. Yet electricity users in Colorado,
Minnesota, and many other states can’t choose their electric utility. But
finally, with community solar, everyone has the option to stop buying the
standard brown energy utilities serve and CHOOSE what type of electricity
they want. Many community solar programs are either no-cost or can even
save you money.
What are community solar gardens?
Community solar gardens are large, commercial-grade solar arrays that are shared by multiple community subscribers who receive credit on their electricity bills for their share of the power produced. Community solar gardens are built and managed by community solar developers. Community solar gardens offer an alternative to roof-top solar installed at your home or business.
I'm a renter that doesn't own my roof/ I live in an apartment. Can I still participate?
Yes! Community solar was put in place to help bridge those gaps of residents who have no options for solar. Because no Installation is required. As long as you are the account holder for your electric bill you can subscribe, go green, and start saving. The best part is, even if you move you can still take it with you in most cases.
Is there a monthly charge? What is the monthly cost?
No. Run on Solar only partners with community solar gardens that provide guaranteed discounts. As a subscriber, you will not be charged monthly for a portion of the project’s energy production. You’ll receive solar credits that help cover your energy bill payment and save you money on your annual energy costs. Your solar credits and savings will vary depending on the state program or specific solar project. People who subscribe to community solar can save up to 15% each month. With community solar, your savings are locked in – with no hidden fees – so you’ll always pay less on your energy costs than if you hadn’t subscribed to community solar.
Is there an upfront cost or sign-up fee?
No, there are no upfront costs or fees.
Do I need equipment for the Community Solar program?
No, the solar system will be located on a remote roof or property. This means both homeowners and renters are welcome to sign up for our program, and the savings will apply directly to your community solar statement
This all sounds too good to be true – will my cost savings change over time with community solar because this is just an introductory rate?
We hear that a lot! But no, the gardens we work with don’t use introductory rates. They set rates based on your contract and historical utility usage so that they continue to provide consistent savings throughout the lifetime of your solar project.
How do I save money with a community solar subscription?
Your utility is required to compensate community solar gardens at a certain price for solar power. As a subscriber to that garden, you are entitled to a certain portion of that compensation that ranges typically from 5 to 15% (see your Subscription Agreement). Your solar garden typically will pay your electric bill with solar credits produced by the garden, and then invoice you at a lower rate or balance. For example, if you joined a garden that provided 10% savings and your electric bill was $100.00. The garden would pay your $100 balance and invoice you at $90.
What will happen with my utility bill?
You’ll still receive your utility bill, but you’ll see solar credits on it each month for your portion of the community solar project’s energy production.
Why do I pay two invoices each month?
With community solar, you receive two invoices. One is your standard utility bill, and the other is your community solar subscription bill. You pay for the electricity produced by your subscription (SSA rate * kWh). On your utility bill, you will see a new line item for solar credits. This is the amount credited toward your utility bill for your subscription’s production (bill credit rate * kWh). Typically, the difference between the amount credited for the subscription and the amount billed results in overall savings.
When will my project begin producing power?
You can view the specifics of your community solar garden in your gardens online portal. You may have subscribed to a project that is still being built. If that is the case, you will receive updates on construction progress along the way. Likewise, you will receive notice when your project is energized and begins producing solar power.
What if I move and I’m enrolled in Community Solar?
In most cases, your solar savings will move with you! Usually if you move to another property within the same utility territory, you can transfer your savings over the new territory. Just let your garden operator know.
How do Run on Solar make money?
A solar developer is in charge of building and maintaining the Community Solar project. They partner with Run on Solar to take care of the enrollment of subscribers for the project. The developer pays us for each subscriber (specifically, each new kWh of electricity) we enroll in our Community Solar farm. The developer, in turn, earns its money back through customers’ normal monthly utility payments, which is why there are no extra fees needed to participate!
What happens if I move or no longer wish to subscribe to the community solar project?
If you move and your new address is in the same project territory, you can remain subscribed to the same project – but please let your garden know so they can update your information. If you move outside the project coverage area, please call your solar garden operator. They may have another project available in your new neighborhood. If you change your mind, there’s no fee to cancel. Notice is often required, and the length of any notice needed is explained in your agreement.
What’s the catch?
We’re proud to get this question, because it means we’re helping to provide a service people didn’t think was possible. And we’re even prouder to answer, “There is no catch! Your Community Solar farm will bring you savings, year after year.” Community Solar is free to join because you’re not buying your panels. Instead, you’re subscribing to receive credits for the electricity they generate. You don’t need to worry about maintaining, cleaning, or recycling them, nor paying a steep cost to install anything on your property. Our solar developer partners take care of all of that, and you get the credit for supporting local solar energy.
Why can’t I save more?
With Community Solar, you earn modest savings (typically around 10%) on your electric bill each month. While it might not seem like much, it really adds up! Sometimes, though, subscribers still want to know why they can’t save more each month.The answer is that, in order to provide affordable clean energy at no upfront cost and with no recurring subscription fees, we must reduce the monthly savings we offer (while still giving as much of the financial benefit to our subscribers as possible). This allows money to flow evenly so that subscribers benefit and we can afford to offer more projects.If your goal is for solar to cover 100% of your electricity bill, you should look into rooftop solar. Through rooftop solar, you can maximize your long-term savings, albeit that it requires installation fees. When it comes to installing your own solar, the more you can pay upfront for an installation, the more you’ll be able to earn down the line. Installing your own panels is great if you can do it! But the truth is, most of us can’t. Either we’re unable to pay the upfront cost, rent our homes, live in an apartment, or perhaps have roofs that are simply facing the wrong way.
Help us support Solar Communities while staying with Xcel Energy.
-Fight climate change
-Reduce carbon footprint
-Support the transition to renewables
-No Installation or Equipment required
-No upfront Cost or Termination fees
-No Approvals needed from HOAs or Landlords
-Save $ while Creating Local Green jobs & Raise money for Local Non-profits.
-Get your $50-$100 gift card when you enroll before 12/31/2023
-Become a Referral Partner to help others benefit from Solar Communities and receive $50-$100 per Enrolled referral.