Repurposing Old Solar Panels With Equitable Solar Solutions

Blog > Solar Industry News > Repurposing Old Solar Panels With Equitable Solar Solutions

Repurposing Old Solar Panels With Equitable Solar Solutions

“These assets still produce 80% power, so why are we throwing them away?” – Rich Stromberg, Equitable Solar Solutions Director

Solar technology isn’t new. It has been gradually improving overtime, leading longtime solar energy users to update their panels when they become outdated. 

So what happens when solar system owners make a replacement?

Luckily, there are organizations that work to keep older solar panel models in use so  they don’t end up in landfills.    

In fact, most solar panels still have a long work life even after their standard 25-year lifespan. When you take into account the inequity that exists in the U.S. and beyond, it’s easy to see how clean energy can benefit people who struggle with their energy bills.

Colorado Nonprofit Recycles Solar Panels 

Coldharbour Institute, a Colorado-based nonprofit, is a learning laboratory that demonstrates regenerative living practices. It relies on tools, support, and programs to improve the health of the land, people, and communities. 

Their mission is to educate and empower youth and community members to make an impact through sustainability and green solutions. 

One of the ways Coldharbour Institute does this is through their Equitable Solar Solutions™ (ESS) program, which is dedicated to making solar energy more accessible to the low-income residents in Gunnison, Colorado. 

While working with Western Colorado University, Stromberg gave his students a mission. With 12 used solar panels on hand, he asks, “How can we use these assets to create the greatest value for those in our community with the greatest need?”

The students devised and implemented a plan with the city of Gunnison to install the panels on a local ice rink. The rink eventually ended up putting the money that was saved from  utility bills into a program to help low-income residents with their energy bills. Thus, ESS was born. 

Providing Clean Energy for Low-Income Households

ESS acquires old panels from solar companies, or individuals who are upgrading their current home solar panel system. The program then helps install the donated solar panels for households struggling to pay their utility bills. 

However, the extremely cold winter temperatures, arid conditions, and high altitudes of the Gunnison Basin create significant challenges to its population. The well-being of residents is greatly dependent on their access to efficient and sustainable energy. This challenge is heightened by the extreme isolation of the area.

Furthermore, climate change is creating a greater demand for clean energy than ever before. With ESS supplying low-income households with used solar panels, the program is combating climate change two-fold. 

First, there is the obvious benefit of harnessing solar energy to supply electricity to homes (and thus lowering energy bills). And second, the repurposed solar panels are staying out of landfills and preserving natural resources. 

[Related: A Complete Guide to Solar Panel Recycling]

Start Your Solar Energy Journey Today

Do you want to reduce your carbon footprint and lessen the environmental impact of your day to day life? Contact Freedom Solar Power and we’ll help you lower your energy bills and join the good fight against climate change with clean energy. 

Call +1 (800) 504-2337 or contact us today for a free consultation!

Featured image via Equitable Solar Solutions

Related Blog Posts

Willie Nelson for Freedom Solar

Want to know more?

Begin a FREE Consultation.

  1. Send us your info.
  2. We’ll contact you to schedule an appointment.
  3. An energy consultant will meet with you at your home, place of business or virtually.
  4. You will get a custom proposal with system size, design, costs, financing, and savings.

We respect your privacy. Your info will only be used to contact you and to qualify your roof for solar.
By clicking “Contact Me” you authorize Freedom Solar to call you and send you pre-recorded messages and text messages at the number you entered above, using an autodialer, with offers about their products or services, even if your phone number is a mobile phone or on any national or state “Do Not Call” list. Message and data rates may apply. Your consent here is not based on a condition of purchase.