Community solar projects on the rise

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One research firm projects solar gardens will make up a large market share of the industry by 2020

August 11, 2015

For much of the recent rise of solar power, the industry has been centered on distributed rooftop solar and utility-scale solar parks. Another type of solar power arrangement in which consumers share renewable energy installations is set to take off this year, according to a new report from GTM Research.

The firm projects that this method, known as community solar, solar gardens, or shared solar, will make up a large market share of the industry by 2020. Designed for those without rooftop access, shared solar projects will open up opportunities for about 50% of U.S. households and businesses that are unable to host a photovoltaic system due to site unsuitability, ownership, or multi-unit status, according to a recent National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) analysis.

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