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Bulk solar purchase program comes to Southwestern Illinois

The sun is rising this month for homeowners and commercial property owners with the arrival of the Solarize Madison County/Glen Carbon program.

solarizeglencarbonThe program allows individual home and commercial property owners to access lower prices for solar installations through the power of volume purchasing.

The village of Glen Carbon and Madison County Sustainability Program together are supporting the program, which is designed to reduce carbon emissions while providing residents with the opportunity to invest in their own high quality renewable energy solar installation with potentially significant savings on installation cost and energy bills.

“I am thrilled we are working with residents, businesses, farms, and other organizations throughout Madison County in order to save them money on solar installations and their utility bills, while also helping the environment in the process,” commented Madison County Sustainability Coordinator Kim Petzing.

The program is administered by the Midwest Renewable Energy Association at no cost to the village or the county. Lewis and Clark Community College is a partner of the program, supporting outreach efforts.

Over the next few months Midwest Renewable will provide free, public, one-hour long educational sessions called Solar Power Hours for prospective participants to learn how solar energy works and to answer questions. The program’s website includes a sign-up form that will be used to announce Solar Power Hour sessions: The first of these sessions will take place on March 14, at the Glen Carbon Police Department Community Room at 6 p.m.

Such programs have been successful in other jurisdictions in Illinois, as seen in Urbana-Champaign, Bloomington-Normal, and the village of Godfrey.

“We’re very excited to build on our recent success of group purchasing programs around Illinois with Solarize Madison County/Glen Carbon,” said Peter Murphy, solar program manager at MREA. “The support of the village of Glen Carbon, Madison County Sustainability Program, and Glen Carbon Cool Cities Committee is invaluable to helping increase solar adoption locally.”

Through a competitive public bid process, St. Louis-based solar installation firm, StraightUp Solar has been selected to be the program’s installer of choice. StraightUp Solar was the selected installer for the Godfrey program as well. The final decision whether to contract a solar installation is that of the home or commercial property owner. Glen Carbon and Madison County have no legal responsibility or hold any liability for the performance of any contract between StraightUp Solar and residents or businesses in Madison County. The StraightUp solar will be required to follow the Glen Carbon Building Code if the resident/business is located in the village.

StraightUp Solar is fully-licensed turnkey solar energy integrator, bringing the experience of more than 10 years and 700 locally-installed solar energy projects to the solarize program.

“StraightUp Solar exists for one reason: to inspire a Solar Tribe to create a sustainable world. Solarize Madison County/Glen Carbon is an exciting opportunity for us to leverage our Illinois group solar leadership position to bring the benefits of high-quality, low-cost sustainable energy to Madison County and empower program participants save money on their utility bills for the next 25+ years,” said Mike Hornitschek, director of Strategic Development for StraightUp Solar.

For more information, contact Murphy at the Midwest Renewable Energy Association at (414) 988-7963 or

      From the Illinois Business Journal

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