Community solar model "changing the way the United States looks at solar."

BOULDER, COLO. - (February 10, 2014) One of the hottest topics at the 2014 Solar Power Generation USA congress in San Diego this week was innovative business models in the distributed energy generation space. In keeping with this theme, leading community solar company Clean Energy Collective (CEC) was recognized with the award for Most Innovative Solar Company.

CEC is the nation's leading community-owned solar developer, a distributed generation model that allows any participating utility customer the opportunity for solar ownership, including renters, those with shady roofs, and residents in multi-unit dwellings. CEC is unique in its embrace of utilities as partners in the development of medium-scale PV facilities that are jointly owned by individual ratepayers. Through this utility partnership the ratepayers may purchase a single solar panel from the community array or enough panels to offset their entire electricity bill.

SPG's awards panel acknowledged CEC for maximizing benefits for consumers while making the solution incredibly attractive for utilities. "Providing true ownership of panels to community solar participants, presenting no capital costs to the utility company, and demonstrating how such business models can be beneficial for all parties involved, Clean Energy Collective is paving the way for others to help distributed PV move forward," event organizer Green Power Conferences said in its statement.

Presented by prominent military and sustainability leader Rear Admiral Len Hering, the Most Innovative Solar Company award was accepted on behalf of CEC by Bart Rupert, Senior Vice President of Business Development. "We are honored that Clean Energy Collective was recognized with this award and proud that community-owned solar is playing such a key role in bringing renewable energy to a much broader audience," Rupert said.

CEC currently has 33 community solar facilities operating or in development in six states with 13 investor-owned, cooperative, and municipal utility partners, and is expected to have 50 MW of community solar capacity by the end of this year.

SPG USA 2014 award winners were selected by a panel of experts including: Craig Lewis, Executive Director at Clean Coalition: Sachu Constantine, Policy Director at California Center for Sustainable Energy; Steve Iyer, VP Operations at GCL Solar Energy, Inc.; and Jim Avery, Senior VP, Power Supply at San Diego Gas & Electric.

About Clean Energy Collective (CEC)

Colorado-based Clean Energy Collective is the nation's leading developer of community-owned renewable energy facilities and power generation. CEC established the first community-owned solar garden in the country in 2010 near El Jebel, Colorado. Since that time, CEC has built or has under development 33 community solar projects with 13 utility partners across 6 states, representing 18 MW of community solar capacity.

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