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Why Commercial Solar Hot Water
Many commercial businesses are now turning to solar water heating to reduce their operating costs, as well as to promote their commitment to sustainability, energy independence, and protecting the environment for future generations. Here are a few of the main reasons why more businesses are going solar today:
Solar Hot Water Systems Cut Operating Expenses.
By tapping into solar water heating, businesses can cut operating costs and reduce their environmental impact. The energy savings potential is greatest for businesses that use high volumes of heated water, such as: apartments, restaurants, hotels, universities, and other hot-water-intensive sectors. According to the US Department of Energy, investing in renewable solar thermal technology could cut more than 20% of business energy costs. (See a complete list of solar thermal applications for businesses.)
New Solar Thermal Project Financing
In the past, businesses had to use capital or loans to finance a solar thermal system. Today, there are solar thermal power purchase agreements (solar thermal PPAs) and solar thermal leases. These new financing models allow businesses and governments to utilize solar thermal with little to 0 upfront costs, while still reducing solar water heating expenses by 10% to 20%. (Contact Free Hot Water to find out more.)
Hedging Against Unpredictability and Commodity Natural Gas Prices
As energy rates continue to rise, companies are looking to solar thermal systems as the solution to hedge against rising and unpredictable energy costs. The commercial cost of a therm of natural gas has risen from $0.72 in 1980 to $1.12 in 2009 – an increase of 56%. While natural gas prices have fallen recently, it’s still a commodity. As more utilities turn to gas power plants, the supply and costs associated with the regulation of hydrolick fracturing (“fracking) will result in higher prices. Using solar hot water, your business can reliably produce up to 70% of its annual water heating costs for 25 years or more, and solar thermal monitoring systems can confirm your annual production.
Generous Solar Thermal Incentives
To encourage more use of solar thermal for commercial applications, states and the Federal government have passed numerous rebates and tax incentives for solar water heating. Current solar thermal incentives for businesses include:
- 30% Federal tax credit
- State Incentives (see a full list)
- Increase Resale Value Without Increase in Property Taxes
- 5-year Accelerated Depreciation (MARCS)
- Loan Interest Deductions are Available
Promoting Your Business as Green, Sustainable, and Energy Independent
Consumers are increasingly choosing businesses that care about the Earth, especially those businesses with high energy needs, such as luxury hotels, apartment buildings, universities, restaurants, wineries, breweries, and Laundromats. In addition to saving energy costs, businesses that switch to solar water heating can promote their businesses as being “green” and “sustainable.” Solar hot water can also count towards businesses seeking LEED certifications. For businesses wishing to promote themselves as contributing to U.S. energy independence, solar water heating is an excellent example of businesses relying on clean and renewable energy from the sun.
Today, there are thousands of commercial solar hot water systems installed around the world. Solar water heating systems have been proven to be cost effective and easily adaptable to a wide variety of commercial applications.
For a free evaluation of a solar hot water system for your commercial application, Contact us.