Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to the most common questions and concerns regarding community solar in New York State

What is Community Solar?

Community Solar is a way of bringing the benefits of solar power to people who can’t put it on their own properties – homeowners with shaded or older roofs, condo dwellers, renters, businesses and institutions.  It’s a cooperative arrangement that lets groups of people use electricity generated by a solar array built on a location that makes sense in their area.  A portion of the electricity is attributed to each participant (“subscriber”) according to the terms of their particular contract.  Just like rooftop solar for your home or business, community solar is provided by developers who are motivated to save you money.

Who pays for the array to be built?

Solar developers spearhead the construction of these systems, pulling together the financing, insurances, technical expertise and other resources they need.  They are repaid over time by the revenues flowing into the project from subscribers.  Because the cost of solar power is falling sharply, customers and developers can both benefit financially.

How will it appear on my electric bill?

If you own a share of or subscribe to a community solar project, you will receive virtual net metering credits on your electric bill from your utility. Each credit is equal to one kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity. For example: you use 1,000 kWh at your home in one month, and your community solar share produces 800 kWh. The 800 kWh in credits from your share are applied to your electric bill, and your utility bills you for the remaining 200 kWh. You pay your community solar provider directly for the cost of your share or subscription.