Next Step Living reaches over 10,000 reservations for community solar gardens
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Next Step Living reaches over 10,000 reservations for community solar gardens

Even amid the strong growth of the U.S. solar market, community solar, where customers sign up for shares in remote utility-scale solar projects, stands out as an area of particularly rapid expansion. In June GTM Research estimated that the U.S. community solar market would grow five-fold this year to reach 115 MW, and would grow to over 500 MW annually by 2020. An announcement today by Massachusetts-based Next Step Living is in line with these trends. The company reports that it has reached nearly 11,000 reservations for community solar gardens, with more than 1,500 contracts for gardens expected to go live in…
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Community Solar: Two Paths forward in Massachusetts
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Community Solar: Two Paths forward in Massachusetts

Massachusetts has created a legal structure that says investor-owned utilities must allow Community Solar via Virtual Net Metering. There are two basic models – the Participant Ownership model and the Public Lease model. However a project is legally structured, the basic mechanics for delivering benefits to the projects participants is the same, thanks to virtual net metering. Once a community solar project has been commissioned, the utility measures how much electricity is produced, and then credits the accounts of the beneficiaries (owners or participants) based upon their amounts of ownership. Seems simple enough on the surface, but it took a lot of legal work…
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Community Solar – Why Massachusetts is ahead of the curve, and needs to stay there
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Community Solar – Why Massachusetts is ahead of the curve, and needs to stay there

We are in the midst of an energy revolution. Massachusetts, the rest of America, and the rest of the world are building out a clean energy infrastructure. This infrastructure will be made of community solar projects, wind turbines and other renewable sources of power. We have a challenge with how we’re doing it in the United States. In certain places the poor are missing out, and the rich, as the adage goes, are getting richer. This isn’t what we had in mind when we say we want to democratize energy. It’s gotten to the point where certain groups are using this economic divide to…
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