A few years ago, this publication was full of solar company ads. Today you’ll probably only see our advertisement. So, what happened?
BOOM TO BUST, WITH SOME EXCEPTIONS
From 2011 to 2013, Hawaii experienced a “solar boom” due to the easy-to-navigate Net Energy Metering (NEM) program in partnership with Hawaiian Electric. NEM was a “dollar for dollar” credit on your electricity bill. In short, the power you produced on your home could also be sent back to the grid for credits.
This program was a huge success, as 300 different entities submitted solar permits annually from 2011 to 2013, including new solar startups, mainland solar companies and electrical companies installing solar systems. Even roofing companies rushed to join in.
THE END OF NEM: THE FALLOUT, AND THE PRESENT
Unfortunately, most of the companies that tried to capitalize on the NEM movement have either left Hawaii to focus their attention to more lucrative states or have gone out of business outright.
The Hawaii solar market contraction was sudden and undeniable. In 2013, there were more than 300 companies filing for permits. That number dropped to 120 in 2014. The downward trend continues today as only four of the top 10 solar companies in Hawaii (by number of permits) are locally owned and operated. RevoluSun is proud to be in the top spot.
LIFE AFTER NEM: PROGRAM COMPLEXITY
After NEM ended, solar systems became a bit more complex, and new programs required a much deeper understanding of solar system design. As “plug and play” systems fell by the wayside, a lot of companies that cut corners to deliver the absolute lowest cost ultimately failed because the financial burden of routine fixes and faulty equipment became too much to shoulder.
Additionally, new DPP processes, electrical inspections and the additional financial pressure of long installation wait times left many companies unable or unwilling to continue operations. The end result?
Hundreds of solar providers closed their doors, and now more than 35,000 solar system owners have no one to call to maintain their systems.
BUT I HAVEN’T GONE SOLAR YET. SHOULD I?
Yes! While the industry has indeed faced challenges, it has evolved into a much more stable environment, and a handful of local businesses continue to responsibly push Hawaii’s clean energy goals.
With the federal solar tax incentives expiring at the end of 2021 and a forecast of tremendous growth over the next 14 months, now is the time to get solar.
A NAME YOU CAN TRUST
Locally owned, RevoluSun is a nationally recognized full-service provider of photovoltaic systems, battery storage and HVAC services for residential and commercial applications. RevoluSun has helped more than 8,500 families and businesses save over $40 million in utility expenses annually. With a reputation of industry leading technology, superior installation methods and commitment to quality, RevoluSun is Hawaii’s most trusted solar provider. Call us today or visit us at revolusun.com.
ADDRESS 660 Ala Moana Blvd. No. 220A, Honolulu