"Citizens Produce Energy" course
Residential homes' roofs constitute the largest power plant for the production of solar energy in Israel: which can supply about 27% of the its energy needs today! According to a study published by the Ministry of Environmental Protection. The first class of the course was held in October-December 2021 with the support of the Ministry of Environmental Protection. Participants learned to promote renewable energy production in their community - the "missing link" in the process of homes taking a significant part in the transition to renewable energy.
The course includes meeting with different energy communities, how solar roofs work, how to create agreement and participation in different community types (shared buildings/neighbourhoods/localities), various financing options and learning the basic economic model. The practical part - in the execution of which we accompany the course participants is the promotion of the topic in their community by conducting "house parties" meetings with other parties that can assist in the matter.
Photo: Einat Dattner
Accompanying residential buildings in the process of installing a solar roof
Despite the significant potential of residential roofs, the amount of installations is very low, especially for buildings which is almost non-existent. We've decided to make it our main objective to change that! Our guidance in helps to overcome various challenges:
Awareness and knowledge - Awareness of the possibility of generating solar electricity on the common roof is very low. That is why we are holding house parties, a national campaign that will launch soon and also rasimg the issue in the national media (as in this article in Globes from 05.12.21 ).
Organization of apartment owners - with the help of a community process we help to obtain the % of consent required for the project (2/3 for use of the entire roof or less for partial utilization).
Funding - In light of the fact that raising funds from all apartment owners is challenging, we make attractive loan options accessible to building committees. In collaboration with the "Sun Stroke" project of the Good Energy Initiative, we assist in receiving grants from business entities for buildings that meet the conditions of the project.
Choosing suppliers - providing advice and assistance in locating and selecting a solar installation company and other professionals as needed (solar consultant, sealing, etc.). To this end, we have written a guide on the subject:
Photo: Downtowngal, Wikimedia
Community Energy Conference
The conference, held on November 25th 2021, was the first of its kind in Israel as it brought together municipal, business and government to promote the field: It presented examples of different models from around the world: an energy-zero building from England, an energy cooperative from Belgium and a joint activity of the municipality with the citizens of Ithaca New York in the USA.
There was a multi-sectoral panel on implementation in Israel as part of representatives of the Ministry of Energy, local authorities, entrepreneurs and citizens, and finally there were discussions in the format of "round tables" of various models and initiatives in Israel: Smart micro-grid for City/neighborhood, PVT system on the roof of a residentail building, community agro-voltaic and the involvement of the business sector in promoting community energy and reducing emissions.
Image credit: The Israeli Energy Forum