What is the Solarize Program?
The Susitna River Coalition (SRC) is helping the Alaska Center and the Alaska Center for Energy and Power (ACEP) organize the Solarize Talkeetna program in 2023. The Solarize program brings community homeowners and business owners together to purchase solar installations together to receive a competitive price with a focus on taking advantage of clean energy rebate programs expected in 2023. Advantages include a free solar assessment, multiple installers to choose from, receiving competitive rates in Alaska, and technical advice from experts. Additionally, there will be a community give-back program that will donate a free or discounted solar installation to a business, non-profit or residential member chosen by Solarize participants.
What are the benefits of the program?
Investing in solar energy can provide community members and homeowners with long-term cost savings, lower maintenance costs, energy independence, and a reduced carbon footprint. While natural gas may still be necessary for certain applications, such as heating and cooking, using solar energy can help homeowners to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels and contribute to a more sustainable energy future.
Participating in the Solarize program makes getting solar panels for your home or business easier and less intimidating. You will be offered support to navigate through the installation process, hard questions about technicalities and financing, and to take advantage of current federal incentives such as tax credits and rebates.
Photos from previous Solarize programs
Solar power has become increasingly affordable and accessible in the U.S. According to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), prices of solar panels have dropped by 70% since 2014. Furthermore, the solar industry has proven to be economically strong - creating 250,000 jobs by 2021, which will need to grow to anywhere from 500,000 to 1,500,000 if we are to meet the federal goal of a fully decarbonized electricity system by 2035. With a 167% increase in solar jobs over the past decade, the solar workforce is expanding five times faster than the overall job growth in the U.S.
By investing and supporting solar energy, the less legislators and utilities will need to pursue harmful projects such as the proposed massive Susitna-Watana Dam. The more we can diversify Alaska's energy generation, the more resilient and stable out energy grid will be.
How can you join the Solarize program?
The Solarize Mat-Su vetting committee chose these three installation companies for this year's program: Alaska Solar, Arctic Solar Ventures, and Renewable Energy Systems. We encourage you to sign up for multiple site assessments to make sure you are working with the installer that fits your needs.
Site Assessment Links>>> Renewable Energy Systems, Alaska Solar, Arctic Solar Ventures
Want to meet the installers in person, ask questions, and get signed up for a site assessment all in one place? Come to the Solarize Talkeetna Meet the Installers event on May 9th at the Denali Education Center (22510 S. Talkeetna Spur Rd. Talkeetna, AK 99676) from 5:30pm-7:30pm.
The deadline to sign up for the Solarize program this year is June 2nd. If you want to meet the installers and get a free site assessment, please join us at the Meet the Installers meeting at the Denali Education Center in Talkeetna (22510 S Talkeetna Spur Rd.) on May 9th, 2023 from 5:30pm-7:30pm.
If you have any questions, please contact June at June@susitnarivercoalition.org or Rachel Christianson from the Alaska Center at Rachel@akcenter.org.