December 16, 2015
Identifying renewable forms of energy is becoming a high priority for most nations around the world. From solar power to windmills, startups are looking at new ways for us to power everything in our life.
One Albuquerque, NM-based startup, SunPort, is fully embracing the need to ween off of fossil fuels and making solar power more accessible. In an interview during Celebrate 2015, SunPort Director of Information Systems Nick Williams discussed American’s desire to use solar power, but is unfortunately lacking the means to acquire the necessary hardware.
Whether it be due to personal credit or because people rent, adding solar power to their home is a challenge. However, there are intangible ways of using solar power through the use and purchase of solar credits.
According to Sol Systems these are based on “renewable energy credits, or RECs, which are tradable commodities that represent the green attributes associated with energy generated from renewable energy resources, such as sunlight, wind, or water. One REC is generated every time one megawatt-hour (MWh) of clean, renewable electricity is produced. Solar renewable energy credits or SRECs are simply RECs generated from solar power.”
Using this approach, SunPort created a tangible device or a manifestation of the concept. SunPort is sensor that is plugged into a wall that houses a power meter and bluetooth chip. Using the sensor, it talks to their servers where SunPort then purchases the matching amount of solar energy on the user’s behalf.
“It really puts the bar in the floor as far as accessing solar energy, and makes it so anyone can do it without a contract or credit or anything like that,” said Williams. However, the SunPort team had several initial challenges and the largest was tied to explaining how everything worked. “We were talking about his [SunPort CEO Paul Droege] vision and his problem, and what we decided is that you have to make it tangible, you have to make it a physical object, so that people can understand. And that’s what this is. It’s a just a manifestation of the access to that sort of market.”
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