In May 2011, The Community Environmental Council (CEC) launched “Solarize Santa Barbara”, a three-month group purchasing discount program for homeowners in Southern Santa Barbara County. The program is now in its final month, July, and time is ticking away for homeowners who want to harness the power – and affordability – of the sun in their homes.
“The time to go solar is NOW. With Solarize Santa Barbara, there has never been a better opportunity for homeowners in this community to start using the sun to power their homes,” said Megan Birney, Renewable Energy Specialist, Community Environmental Council. “Through Solarize Santa Barbara, we at the CEC have made going solar as easy as possible and we are available throughout the process as an unbiased expert resource. At the end of July, there will be no other chance to get a quality solar system installed with so little effort and at a guaranteed price. We urge every homeowner in Southern Santa Barbara County, if they haven’t already, to go solar today with Solarize Santa Barbara.”
“Solarize Santa Barbara” is a group purchasing discount program for homeowners in Southern Santa Barbara County who want to go solar. The program kicked off May 1, 2011 and will end July 31, 2011. During this time, South Santa Barbara County residents are able to purchase solar at a set price, from two local installers: Sun Pacific Solar Electric and REC Solar. After a rigorous application process, the CEC selected REC Solar and Sun Pacific Solar Electric based on their experience, quality and price and because they are giving homeowners the best solar systems at the best value.
The CEC has been hosting introductory workshops in Carpinteria, Santa Barbara and Goleta where residents can learn about energy efficiency, conservation, and solar energy. The final “Solarize Santa Barbara” workshop will be held on Thursday, July 21, from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. at the Unitarian Society of Santa Barbara, 1535 Santa Barbara Street.
Through “Solarize Santa Barbara”, 20 homeowners have signed contracts and some already have homes powered by the sun.
By taking out the legwork for local residents in choosing a solar installer, the CEC is offering an objective, third party assessment. South Santa Barbara County homeowners do not have to go through the time-consuming and often confusing process of getting multiple bids from solar installers on their home.
With the CEC acting as the “middleman”, “Solarize Santa Barbara” aims to:
- Reduce the costs of solar because community purchasing programs offer better discounts than individual buys
- Simplify contractor selection process
- Ensure quality
- Increase the amount of renewable energy in southern Santa Barbara County.
In order to participate, Solarize Santa Barbara participants must:
- Live within the service territory (Southern Santa Barbara County which includes the cities of Santa Barbara, Carpinteria, Goleta and the Gaviota area).
- Own a home that is suitable for solar installation.
- Sign a contract with one of the CEC’s pre-qualified installers by July 31, 2011.
To apply for “Solarize Santa Barbara”, homeowners can go to www.SolarizeSB.org for the simple, 5-minute application process. Within one week of application, the solar installers will contact applicants to set up home evaluations. Homeowners can also get more information on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/solarizesb
In addition to getting a discounted price for solar power, Solarize Santa Barbara participants will be helping to support the CEC’s mission. Included in the purchase price is a small one-time fee ($0.15 per installed watt) that is based on the size of their solar installation and will be paid by Sun Pacific Solar Electric and REC Solar directly to the CEC. This fee will help the CEC continue to promote renewable energy in the Central Coast region and be self-sustaining, with no additional cost to the homeowner.
About the Community Environmental Council
Since 1970, the Community Environmental Council (CEC) has led the Santa Barbara region – and at times California and the nation – in creative solutions to some of the toughest environmental problems. Today CEC is focused on eliminating the use of fossil fuels in the Central Coast region in one generation – Fossil Free by ’33. Find the CEC on the web at www.cecsb.org on Twitter @CECSB and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/CECSB .