The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) launched the Summer of Solar in July 2021 to celebrate the Americans of different backgrounds who are taking advantage of the sun’s energy and the communities that are making it easier to go solar.
The campaign featured several “solar citizens”—people who have gone solar. They include:
- Maryland resident Tionna Richardson, who went solar to save money on a colleague’s recommendation. She’s saving $150 per month in the winter and spending less than zero in the summer when she generates more electricity than she uses (she gets a credit on her bill).
- California resident Pablo Diaz-Gutierrez, who got a visit from Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm to talk about his experience going solar and how it has reduced his family’s electricity bills. Pablo estimates it will take about five or six years to recoup his investment in solar. Learn more about how to finance your solar energy system.
- Sekar Veerappan of Virginia, who went solar through a solar co-op, a group of homeowners who use their combined purchasing power to go solar.
- Maryland resident Lakisha Harris, who moved into a house that already had solar.
Check out our Homeowner’s Guide to Going Solar for detailed information about how to go solar and tell us your solar story below to be involved in future campaigns.
DOE challenged 125 cities, towns, counties, and communities to help fast-track America’s clean energy future by signing up for SolarAPP+, a new tool that instantly reviews residential solar installation permits, by September 2021.
Secretary Granholm visited Laura Morales in Montgomery County, Maryland, which is exploring the use of SolarAPP+, to talk about her experience going solar and how SolarAPP+ could impact solar adoption in her area. Then she called on mayors across the country to accept the challenge. In September, DOE announced that the goal was achieved.
We want to hear from you: What challenges and benefits have you experienced going solar? Send us your answers and a photo (preferably with you in it) to firstname.lastname@example.org to get featured on our website.
- Can you share a bit about your background, what kind of job you have, where you live, and what kind of house or apartment you call home?
- What made you decide to “take the plunge” and go solar?
- What is the size of your system and when did you install it? Who is your solar installer? What kind of panels do you have (please provide technical specifications)?
- Walk us through the process and steps you took to convert your home to solar power.
- What challenges did you encounter along the way, and how were they handled?
- Did you receive any assistance from organizations in preparing you or your home for the transition to using solar?
- How did you finance your system—purchase, lease, power purchase agreement, or other?
- How has the solar system changed your energy costs?
- What other benefits have you seen since installing solar?
- What advice would you give someone who is considering installing solar power but doesn’t know quite how to begin?
- What do you wish had gone differently in the process of going solar?