Decommissioned, out of warranty solar panels are often still viable, the way that old toaster you dropped off at the Goodwill is still good for somebody. There just isn’t a great “Goodwill” network for those solar panels to find new homes. An estimated 50 thousand functioning solar panels flow to landfill sites every day, while one billion people still lack access to electricity.
A new partnership between EnergyBin and Good Sun is hoping to change this and provide a way for solar companies and individuals to donate those still-viable solar panels to underserved communities.
Good Sun works to divert solar panels away from landfills and back into needy communities. EnergyBin is leveraging its exclusive member network to pull together solar equipment, monetary donations, and other resources. As a wholesale solar B2B exchange with over 500 members and growing, EnergyBin combines the totality of the supply chain with its brevity to increase awareness and support for Good Sun.
“We understand that non-profits don’t typically have vast resources to allocate toward marketing initiatives to promote their cause,” says Renee Kuehl, Director of Sales & Marketing at EnergyBin. “By leveraging EnergyBin’s resources in support of Good Sun, we can play an integral part to increase awareness of Good Sun’s work among EnergyBin members and the solar industry at large as well as encourage others to get involved in this cause.”
To date, Good Sun has served over 2,000 low-middle income families, diverted over 150,000 pounds of solar panels away from landfills, and provided over $300,000 in materials and monetary donations to other non-profits and disaster relief efforts. Good Sun collaborates with a number of partners to bring solar energy to underserved communities. This year, they are focusing their work with Habitat for Humanity to install rooftop solar PV systems on 40 homes for families in need. In addition, they are poised to donate a 30kW solar system to a northern California watershed protection organization through a business model of non-profits helping non-profits.
Past Good Sun projects include solar installations at three charter schools in Nevada County, classroom construction and solarization at the Queen Elizabeth Nursery & Primary School in Uganda, solar back-up systems for the CURA Orphanage in Kenya and the Buhoma Hospital in Uganda, and solar for the Hospitality House homeless shelter in Grass Valley, CA. Good Sun’s solar installations function as educational and vocational training opportunities. During construction, Good Sun field technicians train workers to prepare them for jobs in the renewable energy industry.
“At Good Sun, we focus our resources on our philanthropic projects, leaving little in the budget for other expenses such as marketing,” says Eric Stikes, Good Sun’s co-founder and President. “Having EnergyBin as a partner, advocating for our mission by advertising to their considerable list of contractor, manufacturer, and distributor partners, allows us to have a presence in a much wider marketplace than we would otherwise be able to access. This proposition is unique and our partnership with EnergyBin is therefore extremely valuable as it has the potential to allow Good Sun to scale up and multiply our positive impact to the people we serve and the communities in which we work.”
Through the collaboration, EnergyBin members and individual solar owners are invited to support Good Sun through cash and solar equipment donations in exchange for a tax write-off, or offer equipment at deep discounts. Modules acceptable for donation need to be producing at least 50% of their rated power. Equipment donors should be prepared to show evidence that second-hand modules have been tested and are in good working order. Good Sun is a U.S. federally-registered 501(c)(3) public charity and California state-registered domestic non-profit.
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