Neighborhood Sun Releases 2021 Impact Report Demonstrating Massive Growth and Extended Reach Benefitting More Communities Across the U.S.
Community solar company grows with Astral Power merger and successful community round
Silver Spring, Maryland – July 14, 2022 – Neighborhood Sun, a community solar company making affordable solar accessible to all through its advanced community solar software platform, Sun Engine™, recently published its 2021 Impact Report, highlighting a year of massive growth and positive environmental impact for the company.
This growth is fueling the expansion of clean energy access to include the estimated 80% of Americans who can’t put solar on their roof, especially low-income households who have been forced to bear the largest health and financial burdens caused by fossil fuel pollution, despite having the smallest carbon footprints.
Community solar breaks all the barriers to traditional solar, allowing anyone with an electricity bill to enjoy the benefits of access to clean energy, such as cleaner air and cheaper electricity bills. The community solar market is doubling on average year-over-year, according to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. In 2021, Neighborhood Sun increased its kilowatts of clean energy under management by 550%, meaning more clean energy on the grid to displace fossil fuels and more clean energy savings in people’s pockets.
Despite needing savings the most, the 44% of American households that qualify as Low- and Moderate-Income (LMI) have historically been the last to access clean energy savings. Neighborhood Sun is working to change that.
To date, Neighborhood Sun has saved its customers, 18% of whom have been LMI, over $383K in electricity bill savings. In 2021, Neighborhood Sun increased the percentage of its customers who qualify as LMI by 195% compared to the year before and announced the nation’s largest community solar project dedicated 100% to LMI residents, the Oaks Landfill Community Solar Farm. Moving forward, the company plans to continue increasing the percentage of LMI customers it serves and advocating for policies that support the LMI community.
“Since our founding in 2016, Neighborhood Sun has worked to serve people and the planet by making clean, affordable energy accessible to all — not just the select few,” said Gary Skulnik, Neighborhood Sun’s CEO and Founder. “We’ve grown so much since we started as
a small business in Silver Spring, Maryland, but one thing will never change. We’re here to build a solar community — not just a business. We’re driven by our passion for the community solar model, which is essential to ensuring an equitable clean energy transition.”
Neighborhood Sun’s impactful growth in 2021 was primarily fueled by its highly experienced team and successful WeFunder round. The company launched a second WeFunder round this year that individuals and businesses can invest in through the end of July.
Neighborhood Sun officially merged with Astral Power in 2021, doubling its team and giving the company a strong foothold in New York, community solar’s largest and fastest-growing market. In 2022, the combined teams will manage more than 130 megawatts of community solar and virtual net-metered renewable energy projects and customers, enough to power the equivalent of nearly 25,000 homes across the country.
Closing its first WeFunder round in 2021 with a raise of over $1 million allowed Neighborhood Sun to launch Sun Engine™, the company’s fully customizable advanced community solar management platform. Neighborhood Sun white labels Sun Engine™ to help other providers easily increase community solar access. The company is currently conducting its second WeFunder round, which has already raised over $700K. This round differs in that it’s a community round, allowing fans, customers, and everyday people to invest in the hottest sector of the solar market under the same terms venture capitalists and angel investors would be offered, all for a starting at a minimum investment of just $250. Community rounds help to democratize investing so everyone can have the opportunity to invest in a cleaner energy future, not just seasoned investors.
As a result of its positive impact on the environment, Neighborhood Sun was recognized as Best for the World™ 2021 in recognition of its exceptional positive impact in the Environment Category by the global nonprofit B Lab. Best for the World is a distinction granted by B Lab to Certified B Corporations (B Corps) whose verified B Impact Scores in the five impact areas evaluated in the B Impact Assessment — Community, Customers, Environment, Governance, and Workers — rank in the top 5% of all B Corps in their corresponding size group. Neighborhood Sun’s score of 130.5 is the highest in the industry. This year, Neighborhood Sun was awarded the same recognition for its commitment to environmental stewardship, earning the company the title for two years back-to-back.
“Our impact business model incentivizes creating positive social and environmental impact in every aspect of our business, and our B Corp certification ensures we hold ourselves accountable for our impact on both the communities we serve and ourselves,” said Skulnik. “We are honored to be recognized as Best for the World™ for the second year in a row and will continue increasing access to clean, affordable energy through community solar. ”
Neighborhood Sun’s solar projects have generated over 139 million kilowatt-hours of clean energy to date, preventing 218 million pounds of CO2 from entering the atmosphere (the equivalent of taking 21,281 cars off the road for a year).
Neighborhood Sun’s 2021 Impact Report can be downloaded here.
About Neighborhood Sun
Neighborhood Sun is committed to bringing the promise of solar to everyone, not just the select few. The company is a national leader in expanding solar access to underserved communities to address energy equity. Through its SunEngine™ advanced software platform, it offers a flexible, secure and fully transparent platform for solar developers or asset owners, plus a simplified enrollment experience for customers. For more information, go to www.neighborhoodsun.solar
Wilkinson + Associates for Neighborhood Sun