Indiana County residents forming solar co-op to go solar together, get a discount

By Zach Schalk on November 14, 2018

Neighbors in Indiana County have formed a solar co-op to save money and make going solar easier, with the help of Solar United Neighbors. Evergreen Conservancy, Indiana Borough, the League of Women Voters of Indiana County, and the Indiana County Sustainable Economic Development Task Force are sponsoring the co-op. The group is seeking participants and will host a public information session Thursday, November 29 at 6:30 p.m. at the Indiana Borough Hall (80 N 8th Street, Indiana, PA 15701) to educate the community about solar and the co-op process. Click here to RSVP for the event.

“We’re forming this co-op to make saving money with solar energy as simple as possible,” said Sherene Hess, Indiana County Commissioner. “We also hope the co-op will provide a boost to green jobs in the region by demonstrating that there is strong demand for solar energy in our communities.”

Solar United Neighbors expands access to solar energy by educating Pennsylvania residents about the benefits of distributed solar energy, helping them organize group solar installations through solar co-ops, and strengthening Pennsylvania’s solar policies and its community of solar supporters. Nationally, solar co-ops have helped more than 3,360 homes install solar, investing roughly $63.5 million in the solar economy.

“I am excited to work with residents in and around Indiana County to educate them about the benefits of solar energy,” said Henry McKay, Solar United Neighbors of Pennsylvania Program Director. “The Solar Co-op helps participants learn about the technology so they feel confident in their decision to go solar.”

The co-op will also be hosting a film screening of the documentary “Catching the Sun” on the evening of December 11 at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Humanities and Social Science Building, room 225. The film screening will be followed by a discussion of how Indiana County is working to bring green jobs to the region, and how the community can join in this effort by going solar thru the Indiana County Solar Co-op. Full details and RSVP information below.

Co-op participants will select a single company to complete all of the installations. They will then have the option to purchase panels individually based on the installer’s group rate. By going solar as a group and choosing a single installer, participants can save on the cost of going solar and have the support of fellow group participants and solar experts at Solar United Neighbors.

Indiana County homeowners interested in joining the co-op can sign up at the co-op web page. Participants who live outside Indiana County may be able to join if they are not too far from the county line. The solar co-op is free to join and joining is not a commitment to purchase panels. Once the group is large enough, Solar United Neighbors will help the co-op solicit competitive bids from area solar installers.

Event Details

Free Public Information Session

Thursday, November 29
6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Indiana Borough Hall
80 N 8th Street
Indiana, PA 15701

Free Film Screening and Discussion

Tuesday, December 11
Starting at 6:30 p.m.
Indiana University of Pennsylvania Humanities and Social Science Building
Room 225
Indiana, PA 15705