Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - 21

COOPERATIVE Concerns
By Blair Romero
Rooftop solar: Get the facts
without the fiction
I
nterested in a rooftop solar system for your home? There
are many important factors to consider in order to ensure
that your investment is all sun and no shade. Unfortunately,
there has been a significant increase in reports of consumers
being misinformed by some solar installers.
For example, a news program recently reported that a
Tallapoosa resident was sold a rooftop solar system on the
promise of monthly electricity savings, but the resident never
experienced those savings. Instead, she was left with holes
in her roof, rain-damaged walls and appliances that were
destroyed because of a faulty system connection.
Across the state in Barrow County, a resident installed a
rooftop solar system with the expectation that it would
eliminate his electricity bill as the solar installer had indicated.
When that didn't happen, he tried to contact the installer to
discuss the issue, but the company was unreachable.
For Georgians interested in generating their own electricity
from the sun, rooftop solar can be an attractive option. It's also
a significant financial investment, and the solar installer you
choose is as important as the system's design and size. Homeowners
considering rooftop solar should obtain proposals from
several reputable solar installers.
Top five statements to be wary of when you
are considering a rooftop solar installation.
" Rooftop solar will eliminate your electric bill. "
In most scenarios, that's simply not true. Unless you have
a rooftop solar and battery storage system large enough to meet
all of your electricity needs during every hour of the day, you'll
need reliable electricity from your local electric membership
corporation (EMC) when solar power is not available. While the
amount of electricity you purchase from your local EMC may
decrease, it will still be providing you with electricity at night
and on cloudy days.
" Your electric rate is projected to increase substantially
in the coming years. "
Some solar installers substantially overstate increases in
electricity rates. In reality, the cost of electricity has been
relatively stable. Based on data from the U.S. Energy Information
Administration, retail electricity prices averaged an increase of
only 1.16 percent per year from 2011 to 2020.
" You have 24 to 48 hours to sign a contract or the deal is
no longer valid. "
Rooftop solar is a significant investment that you should
consider carefully to ensure that the installation will meet your
needs, goals and financial objectives. Be cautious of solar
installers who pressure you to sign a contract in a limited
window of time.
" You'll make a lot of money selling power back to your
electric cooperative. "
This is unlikely. Some solar installers use incorrect rates to
project how you will be credited for any excess energy that your
rooftop solar system generates and sends back to the electric
grid. Be sure to contact your local EMC and confirm that its
buyback policy and rate match what your solar installer used in
its estimate.
" Your electric cooperative doesn't need to be involved. "
It's important to contact your local EMC before installing
rooftop solar. As your trusted energy advisor, your EMC can
help you make smart energy investments, including evaluating
a rooftop solar installation that is appropriate for your electricity
needs. It's also important to complete your local EMC's
interconnection agreement to ensure that your system meets
essential requirements for safety and reliability.
As nationwide leaders in solar energy among electric
cooperatives, Georgia's EMCs know solar. Your local EMC can
help you understand your electricity use and can provide
resources to help you evaluate rooftop solar systems, including
lists of frequently asked questions and important topics to
discuss with solar installers. Visit greenpoweremc.com/solar to
learn more and to search for your local EMC.
Blair Romero is the marketing and communications
manager for Tucker-based Green Power EMC.
www.georgiamagazine.org
21
EE IMAGE DATABASE
http://www.greenpoweremc.com/solar http://www.georgiamagazine.org

Georgia Magazine - May 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Georgia Magazine - May 2022

Contents
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - Intro
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - Cover1
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - Cover2
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - Contents
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - 4
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - 5
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - 6
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - 7
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - 8
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - 9
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Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - 38
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - Cover3
Georgia Magazine - May 2022 - Cover4
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