Less than 15% of the U.S. population would ever be physically able to own solar panels. Collective purchasing agreements may let more people enter the market and speed up solar technology adoption.
Even as the cost of distributed energy solutions like solar panels are dropping, many communities and individuals are not able to participate and help speed up the transition to renewable emery adoption. Why?
It has been estimated that "85 percent of residential customers can neither own nor lease systems because their roofs are physically unsuitable for solar or because they do not control them — like renters and people living in large apartment buildings"
This is where solar gardens come in. People come together and buy shares in this energy collective, both opening up access to those who physically are left out of the market and even increasing efficiencies for those who could without necessarily waiting for the largest energy providers to discontinue traditional power plants.
There are a lot of variations to this concept, but The Clean Energy Collective in Colorado demonstrated a significant advantage in this strategy.