Solar Energy Community Group Offers Pittsburgh Residents Solar Panel Installation Discounts

by Green Jobs Ready on August 25, 2010

Residents in the Pittsburgh area may soon have a more cost-effective and green alternative to traditional electrical power, thanks to discounts on solar panel installations sponsored by the San Francisco-based consumer advocacy group One Block Off the Grid (1BOG).

In a blog posted today on the 1BOG site, the expanding solar discount group confirmed it is now offering Pittsburgh residents “15 percent off the cost of panels and installation.” As one of the country’s leading solar discount groups, One Block Off the Grid confirmed Pittsburgh area participants may save around $50,000 during the life of their solar panel installations. Qualified participating homeowners may also receive interest-free zero-down loan options on solar power systems.

Along with its solar discount program, the innovative alternative energy organization is also promoting Pennsylvania’s numerous financial incentives that support alternative energy adoption and use. Residents can receive funds for “an unlimited amount of time” from the state’s Solar Renewable Energy Credits, or SRECs. Only a handful of states, including Pennsylvania and New Jersey, have SREC initiatives. And as an extra incentive, Pittsburg solar users receive rebates of $1.25 per watt from the state—equaling up to 22 percent of installation costs.

In addition to the statewide funding, 1BOG also identifies Federal Solar Tax Credits as a way for Pennsylvanians to save an additional 30 percent on solar PV installations. According to the blog, the government credit will be paid to eligible participants regardless of existing cash obligations.

Since 2008, One Block Off the Grid has aimed to make clean solar power more affordable to neighborhoods across the country. The group selects companies in various regions to install solar panel systems in specific markets.  It then functions as a self-described “clearinghouse for customers to get what it describes as free and impartial advice on the merits of switching to solar power.”

For their Pittsburgh initiative, the group is set to collaborate with Astrum Solar. The company is expected to lower its usual work costs by 15 percent, thanks in part to reduced marketing costs associated with 1BOG. The organization will ten receive a referral fee—which will then go towards project costs and consumer assistance.

Besides Pittsburgh, 1BOG has programs in several other cities, including: Philadelphia, Cleveland, Phoenix, San Diego, Long Island, New Orleans, San Francisco, San Antonio and Denver.

For additional information about One Block Off the Grid and Astrum Solar, please visit:

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