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Scaling Community Solar Projects Across the United States

We’re at a pivotal point in the shift towards renewable energy: some of the biggest clean energy investment deals in history are being made now, the costs of building and operating renewable energy assets is decreasing, and social and political pressure has never been higher. One of the areas of renewable energy that is really set to soar is Community Solar. Today, solar power makes of 3% of all the energy that’s generated in the U.S. but with more and more states enacting community solar-related legislation, that number will continue to rise.

Making solar power accessible

While it may not be feasible or practical for every American to install and maintain their own solar panels, Community Solar provides local solar facilities that can be shared by everyone. A single community solar project can often power hundreds of homes. Subscribers benefit by knowing that more of their energy usage comes from a renewable source, and they also see reduced energy costs. All residential customers can enjoy the benefits, and businesses can subscribe to the solar farms as well.

Hampshire Power is a Massachusetts-based company whose mission is to help people, property owners, and organizations maximize and monetize renewable energy systems. In order for Hampshire to operationalize their community solar installations, they need a foundation of systems, people and processes to ensure the business maintains control of data, the customer experience and the brand. This is where Hansen comes in. Hansen for Community Solar is a software platform and service that takes away the operational worry and equips Hampshire to handle the solar farm customer acquisition and management.

 

“Businesses will often ask us how many transactions we can handle over a week or month because they want to see how quickly they can grow – the answer with Hansen is it can be hundreds of thousands of transactions.”

 

A system built to scale

Stephen Condon, Director of Community Energy for Hampshire Power explains the challenge in our recent case study, “The scalability is critical. You can’t manage tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, and ultimately millions of customers with a cobbled together platform that’s managed through spreadsheets and not connected to the utility. These systems … need to be operating cohesively together.” The other risk that comes from not having a cohesive platform is security. If your data isn’t sitting in the right place, with the right security protocols, that can be problematic for businesses.

Businesses will often ask us how many transactions we can handle over a week or month because they want to see how quickly they can grow – the answer with Hansen is it can be hundreds of thousands of transactions. And we also make that transaction experience very simple for the customer.

At Hansen, we believe that the future is one that will rely heavily on renewables. We couldn’t be more pleased to be on this journey together with a pioneer like Hampshire Power. With the Hansen software and our combined operational expertise, we can drive the expansion of the promising renewable energy market in North America and beyond.

Watch our case study video on Hampshire Power

 

John Baksa

President, Americas Utilities, Hansen