SOLAR NEIGHBORHOOD CHALLENGE
OUR 3 GOALS
Empower youth to catalyze, track, and report the expansion of solar-powered homes beginning with our own families, classmates, and neighbors.
Connect student-led community impact project design, management and communication skills to problem-based learning in the classroom.
PUSH THE RIGHT POLICIES
Practice participatory democracy by promoting clean energy and green jobs policy advances at every level of government.
Sphere Solar Energy will provide a 5% discount when you switch to solar energy with Sustainability Ambassadors. An additional 5% will be taken off of solar panels made in Washington State.
For every 10 homes that go solar with Sustainability Ambassadors, Sphere Solar Energy will set aside $500 to support big, impactful projects. For every 30 homes that switch to solar energy, Sphere Solar Energy will donate a solar project to impoverished communities. Past community projects have included a $30,000 well installation for the Kenyan Maasai Community.
Solar installations are tracked and reported in alignment with the King County Strategic Climate Action Plan, the King County Cities Climate Collaborative (K4C), and the strategic plans and capital project plans of each individual city and school district. Student Ambassadors and Sphere Solar Energy work with teachers in regular Problem-based Curriculum Design Labs to enhance the relationship between academic and community relevance through solar engineering, science, civics, economics, and global issues.
Solar panel and battery storage grant independence from the grid, making your home resilient to natural events and disasters.
Make Money, Save Money:
When your solar panels make more electricity than you use, utility companies credit you for extra electricity.
By investing in solar panels for your home, you stop purchasing electricity created from coal and fossil fuels.
For every 30 homes that go solar, a community project will be donated to the developing world. Currently, Sphere Solar is working on a well installation for the Maasai community in Kenya.
Sphere Solar installed solar panels and new energy-efficient appliances in Caguas Environmental school.
Sphere Solar installed solar panels for the Maasai Tribe in Kenya. Now, their houses are lit at night and they can charge their cell phones to communicate with others.
For every 30 homes that participate, Sphere Solar Energy will donate a solar-powered water pump to the Maasai tribe, located in Kenya.
DISCOUNTS AND INCENTIVES
Sphere Solar Energy is offering a 5% discount for your entire installation on top of other discounts.
Sphere Solar Energy offers an additional 5% discount on solar panels made in Washington state.
Federal Tax Credit
Claim 26% of the total project as Federal Tax Credit during 2020 (steps down December 31st, 2020).
Zero Sales Tax
Solar panels are sales tax-free in Washington State -- saving you another 10%.
Save money on your electricity bill by paying only for what you need, and receive credit from the utility for your extra electricity— 1-2% in savings.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Why are solar panels being used in Washington? It doesn’t seem sunny enough here.
Seattle is ideal for solar panels because they’re more efficient in cooler temperatures. Germany, for example, is the country with the most solar panels in the world, but they have more overcast days.
What is the upkeep on solar panels?
They are low-maintenance in the PNW due to heavy rainfall. We recommend cleaning once every 4-5 years.
How long can a solar system last?
The solar panels carry a 25 year performance warranty and have a 30 year lifespan.
How do I save money from solar?
Solar panels generate power and reduce electricity you buy from the grid. When you generate extra electricity, the utility will give you back energy credits.
CAREERS IN SOLAR ENERGY
In partnership with Sphere Solar Energy, Sustainability Ambassadors provides opportunities for students to explore careers in solar energy:
Shadow day on an installation project
Job path to journeyman electrician (Connect to CTE classes and Coordinators)