If you want to learn more about going solar, here’s a meeting you might want to attend

Solar United Neighbors aims to help people go solar

Recently, Kiskiack Golf Club in Williamsburg became the first golf course in Virginia to go solar (L to R): Solar United Neighbors of Virginia Program Director Aaron Sutch, Kiskiack owner Carl Zangardi, William & Mary’s Henry R. Broaddus, and Chad Wilkins from Convert Solar (Southside Daily photo/Courtesy of Solar United Neighbors of Virginia)
Recently, Kiskiack Golf Club in Williamsburg became the first golf course in Virginia to go solar (L to R): Solar United Neighbors of Virginia Program Director Aaron Sutch, Kiskiack owner Carl Zangardi, William & Mary’s Henry R. Broaddus, and Chad Wilkins from Convert Solar (Southside Daily photo/Courtesy of Solar United Neighbors of Virginia)

VIRGINIA BEACH — Area residents will have the opportunity Wednesday evening to learn how they can add solar power to their homes and possibly save money in the process.

Solar United Neighbors of Virginia, a nonprofit that works with 23 solar energy co-op groups across the state, will hold an information session at 6:30 p.m. at the Brock Environmental Center.

It’s open to the public and it’s aimed at educating anyone interested in installing solar energy.

“We want to educate people about solar energy, explain how the process works from start to finish, and support them throughout the process,” said Aaron Sutch, the program director. “Our goal is to arm people with knowledge. You want to be a really well-informed consumer.”

Sutch said Solar United Neighbors aims to help people go solar and also fights for energy rights.

During Wednesday’s session solar energy will be explained, from the technological aspect of how it works to how systems are installed, as well as what the costs might be and even how the local Hampton Roads solar co-op works.

“People can make anywhere between 20 percent to 100 percent of their own energy,” Sutch said. “It’s common for solar users to produce a surplus, then to apply that surplus to what they might use from the grid.”

He said people are often surprised that the systems don’t use batteries to store energy, but instead feeds the grid.

As part of the co-op, Solar United Neighbors will offer assistance and support from beginning to end, and the local co-op also identifies and works with installers, who often provide discounted rates to co-op members.

Since 2014 the nonprofit has helped facilitate 650 installations across the state.

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