O2 emc (Winner)
O2’s commitment to renewable energy extends beyond the development and construction of utility scale solar farms. Last year, they partnered with the Mount Airy School System, offering a grant to fund a week long educational program on renewable energy. Students also experienced an O2 solar farm first hand on a field trip to Ararat Rock Solar Farm. O2’s strong belief in local development has allowed children in rural communities to realize the environmental and economic benefits of generating clean energy. North Carolina has reaped the benefits from the robust growth of the solar industry, and O2 emc led the way with over 100MW in production and close to 100MW more in development. O2’s investment has created thousands of jobs, long term property tax revenues for rural areas across the state, and a clean energy reputation that has attracted large companies like Google, Apple, Facebook and others to locate in NC.
O2 is engaged in extensive research into storage + solar solutions and plans to incorporate this into several projects. This will counter the intermittency of solar, providing greater dependence on renewables and less on fossil fuels. O2 would be one of the storage pioneers in the NC market.
Accelerate Solar is a locally owned business focused on the design & installation of solar energy for residential, commercial, & small scale utility projects. In their first year, local companies were installing solar energy for $5 - $10 a watt. Accelerate Solar began offering projects at lower prices of $3.5 - $4 per watt, making other companies in the area bring their prices down. The effect was to bring more solar energy to the Charlotte area as clients were now seeing more financing options and a better return on their investment.Together, Accelerate Solar has now sold almost 2 MW of residential solar since its' founding. Even more impressive is that this shift was started by two young entrepreneurs, 24 and 27 at the time. Both entrepreneurs share a vision that clean energy is just one tool in addressing issues involving the environmental and constantly examine our own internal processes to reduce waste, reuse materials and increase overall efficiency.
Chris and Xavier have had the privilege to engage with scores of young professionals. They have opened the doors of opportunity to many, including veterans, new graduates & students needing internships. This has led to hiring people who may lack education on paper, but possess the desire to excel.
COX Media Group Charlotte / WSOC-TV
Throughout the years CMG Charlotte has put aggressive energy saving projects in place. We changed fluorescent light fixtures from T12 to energy saving T8’s throughout the facility sometime around 2007. In 2012 we installed LED and fluorescent fixtures to replace the old less energy efficient incandescent lights in our news studio. This saves energy in two ways. It reduced the energy used for the light fixtures and reduced our need for AC cooling because they produce less heat than the old incandescent fixtures. In 2013 we installed a large solar farm on the front lawn of the station visible from North Tryon St.. The size of the system is 214 kW DC. Annually it will produce up to 302,000 kWh, which will then reduce our facility's carbon footprint by 204 tons. That is the equivalent of powering 27 average sized homes annually along with eliminating 36 automobiles from the streets. That will also lower CMG Charlotte’s power consumption by 8% annually.
COX Media Group Charlotte is dedicated to energy reduction and energy conservation and has made major enhancements to the facility, operations and corporate culture to embrace this initiative.
Energy Wise Solutions
Energy Wise Solutions is a leading company in the Charlotte area in verifying energy building code, performing energy audits and energy saving retrofits and installing and servicing solar PV systems and solar hot water systems. We work with customers in a way that helps them to understand their impact on the environment as well as measures they can take to reduce their footprint, all while helping them to save money on energy bills.
We educate the customer instead of just doing the work. We want them to understand the impact they have on the environment and give them solutions to reduce that impact.
Renu Energy Solutions
Solar for homes and local businesses has swept the Carolinas in recent years, and since 2010 Renu Energy Solutions has asserted a special place in this movement. A Charlotte-based company with an emphasis on sound project plans and installation quality, Renu recently achieved a milestone of over 2 GigaWatt hours of verifiable solar energy produced over the lifetime, just from our actively-monitored solar photovoltaic systems. According to EIA, that is equivalent to keeping over 1 million tons of coal from being burned for power, and according to EPA it’s equivalent to a reduction of 1,400 metric tons in CO2 emissions, as much as 350,000 urban trees would remove from the atmosphere in a year. We also recently partnered with sonnenBatterie to install the first automated home energy storage and emergency backup system in the Carolinas. Every day Renu educates energy customers around the region about the value of generating more of our energy closer to where it is used.
Renu’s strengths are technical expertise and the most efficient and durable solar panels available. Renu strives to illuminate the benefits that come from these aspects of solar, so that every energy user will have a great, custom system and will understand how it works and why it’s truly valuable.