Solarize grows the solar industry
Solarize programs help build the entire local solar industry, creating good jobs, reducing utility bills and replacing climate-damaging fossil fuels. In Portland, Oregon, both Solarize installers (yellow) and non-Solarize installers (blue) experienced a rapid growth in business during the period of the Solarize program.

The “Solarize” model originated in Portland, Oregon as a grassroots effort to greatly increase the installation of rooftop residential solar power systems. It has proven highly successful in dozens of communities across the country since 2009.

The Solarize model relies on nonprofit connections and community relationships to facilitate group discounts on purchases of solar power systems. It removes barriers and simplifies the decision to install a solar power system to a yes or no proposition. Through peer-to-peer education, groups of homeowners are able to secure solar power systems for prices below the normal retail cost of solar power, which has already fallen dramatically in recent years.

The built-in tiered pricing structure (lower prices as more homeowners participate) allows homeowners to save even more and incentivizes the peer-to-peer education.

See our Locations page for a list of current Solarize programs in North Carolina, and information on programs that have been offered around the state since 2013.


Partners in the 2016 Solarize the Triangle program were:

Nonprofit Sponsors

NC WARN is a 29-year-old, Durham-based climate and energy justice nonprofit that has offered Solarize programs in Durham, Chatham County, Western Wake County and the Triad. In addition to helping individuals reduce their carbon footprint, NC WARN puts pressure on Duke Energy — the world’s largest corporate utility — to change its business model in time to avert climate catastrophe.

nextclimate-cropNextClimate, based in Carrboro, was founded as a nonprofit in 2013 and has sponsored Solarize programs in Orange County since 2014. Its mission is to empower people to take action on climate change. NextClimate believes that bringing affordable solar power to the people of North Carolina is the best way to lower energy costs, heighten self-reliance and strengthen our energy independence in a way that protects our environment and lifestyle for future generations.

Solar Installers

The two solar installers that worked on Solarize the Triangle have worked on NC WARN and NextClimate Solarize programs since 2014.

SEMSouthern Energy Management (SEM) of Morrisville is one of the most highly qualified solar design and installation teams in the country.

YesSolarSolutions_LogoYes Solar Solutions of Cary is one of North Carolina’s leading residential solar installation companies. In June 2013, Yes became the first solar installer on the East Coast to earn Company Accreditation from the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP).

We also worked with RED Group of Lewisville during our Solarize Triad campaign.

Faith Community Partners

Several Triangle faith communities were Solarize the Triangle partners in 2016. Read more and see a list here.