ATLANTA, Ga. (Aug. 13, 2015) – Savannah and Tybee Island were the second group of communities to engage in a solarize project in the Southeast, a program initiated to spark the interest in solar power. In only a few short weeks, Hannah Solar, the exclusive provider to Solarize Tybee & Chatham County, contracted with 59 homes and have successfully installed systems on more than 30 rooftops to date
The model for this program emerged in 2009. Since that time there have been more than 200 campaigns across the country, including two in Ashville, North Carolina; but other than that Solarize Tybee was a pioneer in the Southeast and the first in Georgia “It’s really important to point out that a lot of previous campaigns have been in states like Massachusetts and New York where there are very strong incentives for solar,” said Ryan Cook of Meister Consultants Group. “Given that Solarize Tybee succeeded at this scale virtually no state support, this was a really impressive result and a testament to the entire team.”
As the program gained popularity, the price of installation dropped encouraged more to apply for the program before the deadline. (The deadline ended before HB 57 passed. We teamed with a financing company called Dividend Solar, but I don’t think any customers took advantage. HB 57 will definitely attract customers now). House Bill 57, which passed in July of this year, is seen as a possible game changer, as it allows for third-party financing on systems; residential, commercial and institutional. Hannah Solar’s representative in Savannah, Grant Tallon, is very pleased with the program thus far, “Most impressive and encouraging, has been the attitude of the residents of Chatham,” said Tallon. “Their interest and enthusiasm has been contagious.”
“I just wonder how long it will be when we will not be totally obsessed with this program,” said Shirley Wright, resident of Tybee Island since June of 2009. She is thrilled to be part of the program saying, “Since the installation only a few weeks ago, our energy usage has gone down almost 75%. In addition to solar, we also received an energy auditfrom Georgia Power, who gave us great ideas such as running a dishwasher at eleven o’clock at night instead of at two in the afternoon. We are generally more energy conscious because of being educated and being so enthusiastic about our solar installation, which is a 5.1 kilowatt (kW) system.”
John Rabun, another Tybee Island resident, who moved into his 6,000 sq. ft. beach-front home less than two years ago is equally thrilled. His bill has been reduced by one-third since the installation the second week in July. The former CEO has been extremely impressed with the entire Hannah Solar operation. “From the leadership on the ground to the installers on the roof,” said Rabun, “Hannah Solar has the nicest group of people I have ever had the opportunity to work with, and that is just beautiful”. He also commented on the encouragement that he received from Paul Wolf, a Tybee Council member, who he claims was a cheerleader for the program.
In Savannah on 46th Street, retired dentist Steve Acuff read about the program in the newspaper and signed up for his Ardsley Park home without hesitation. Even though his small system is only 3 kW, he has seen a one-third reduction in his energy usage. He also enjoys the daily graphs and monitoring capabilities that the apps on his iPhone and computer provide, which allow himto watch the performance of his system on a daily basis.
“I checked into solar five years ago,” said Rabun, “and it would have been two-thirds more than I paid for my system today.” It is clear that Georgia is at a solar tipping point, “With more than 300 solar companies in the state employing over 4,500 people, Hannah Solar is proud to be selected as the exclusive provider for this program, as well as, its new rating as the number one independent installer of solar arrays in the state of Georgia and the 18th largest in the country. Should we begin with this info?
About Hannah Solar
Hannah Solar, listed on the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies for the second year in a row, is a full service, certified solar integrator dedicated to providing the very best in engineering, products, installation and servicing of solar arrays, EV charging stations, critical backup generators and LED lighting. Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia and comprised of a Certified Solar Photovoltaic Installer (NABCEP), licensed Professional Engineers (PE), Master Electricians, service technicians, project management professionals, designers and installers, Hannah Solar serves our clients as a reliable and experienced resource in sustainable energy integration. www.hannahsolar.com
Amanda Brown Olmstead
Brown Olmstead Associates
274 West Paces Ferry Road, Atlanta Ga. 30305