By Matthew Clark
Published Feb. 12, 2016
An event aimed at showcasing the use of residential solar power in the Upstate has been rescheduled to Feb. 20.
The Upstate Solar Tour was initially scheduled for Jan. 23, but inclement weather caused officials with the nonprofit entity SmartPower to reschedule.
Here are the homes that are part of the Upstate Solar Tour
SOURCE: Solarize South Carolina
“We want to have Greenville live up to its name,” White said prior to the proclamation.
The tour will feature four stops and is self-guided. According to Ashley Edwards, community outreach manager for SmartPower, the tour includes three homes that have been fitted with solar panels and a fourth being constructed by Addison Homes with solar shingles.
“The tour is designed to highlight realistic solar options for everyone,” Edwards said, in a media release on the rescheduling of the tour.
According to Solarize South Carolina, the new home is in the Trailside community and is the first “mainstream zero-energy home in Greenville.” It was designed with solar shingles that help the house “produce as much electricity as it consumes.”
According to state figures, there were 580 solar installations in 2014, and Edwards said that has grown to 830 in 2015. The Courtyard by Marriott Greenville Downtown hotel and the One Building both have solar panels installed to generate energy. Edwards said there have been “nearly 2,000” inquiries in the state from homeowners and businesses looking to get an assessment to determine if solar is feasible on homes or property.
There are some incentives attached to solar installation. The General Assembly adopted a renewables portfolio standard that required all utilities to produce 2% of their aggregate capacity using renewable energy by 2021. In 2015, Duke Energy began offering a $1-per-watt rebate off the cost of a solar panel system. The federal government offers a 30% tax credit and the state provides for another 25% tax credit, according to the Clean Energy Authority.
The Upstate Solar Tour stops are all within 12 miles of each other, located north of Greenville near Berea and Travelers Rest.
Reach Matthew Clark at 864-235-5677, ext. 107, or @matthewclark76 on Twitter.