Renewable Power Perspectives Q&A with Kristal Hansley, Founder & CEO of WeSolar, Inc.
I was at a neighborhood conference with 50 Black women organizers who were not invested in the neighborhood solar movement. To be able to provide a product that will save our neighborhood up to 60% on their energy costs is transformative.
WeSolars objective is to bring under-resourced communities inexpensive access to local neighborhood solar and to assist commercial residential or commercial properties with energy effectiveness. When I initially moved to Baltimore, the Community Solar Pilot Program was released, and I wanted to guarantee city citizens were getting the exact same amount of financial investment as the county. Eco-friendly energy has historically been a middle-class problem because Black communities have actually had to live in survival mode, but Reverend Mason and Reverend Dewitt brought me into the circle and linked me with the people I needed to connect with in order to make this collaboration effective.
By Constance ThompsonAugust 27, 2021
The American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) is delighted to share the very first installment in our “Accelerating Renewables” blog series. Each installation will include market leaders and topics associated with accelerating an equitable and just transition to a sustainable energy economy. In recognition of National Black Business Month, our August blog is the first in a series highlighting how Black-owned member companies are thriving in the eco-friendly energy sector.
Kristal Hansley is the Founder & & CEO of WeSolar, Inc and is the countrys very first Black lady CEO in the community solar market. Under her management, WeSolar is growing rapidly, providing consumers throughout Maryland and the District of Columbia access to inexpensive solar energy, no matter house type, and helping hard-working families decrease regular monthly costs.
What inspired you to start your business?
The plain truth that the bulk of families who were getting eco-friendly energy rewards were greater earnings. I remember learning this and believing there needed to be a method to address this space. I discovered there was an issue. I had my own concepts on how to fix it, and I wanted to have agency over my own decisions. I was at a community conference with 50 Black ladies organizers who were not purchased the neighborhood solar motion. It felt like a lightbulb had turned on for me as soon as I began to explain how vital and urgent it was for us to be a part of the solar motion. I started showing how higher-income communities and individuals in the suburban areas were benefiting from eco-friendly tax rewards and had actually gotten a ton of assistance. The reality is, energy usage impacts Black household spending plans considerably. 36% of Black households experience a high energy burden, implying they spend over 6% of their income on home energy costs. Thats a huge percentage. To be able to provide an item that will conserve our community up to 60% on their energy costs is transformative.
Tell us about your business?
WeSolars mission is to bring under-resourced neighborhoods budget friendly access to local community solar and to help business residential or commercial properties with energy effectiveness. In Maryland, legislators passed legislation that states 50 percent of its electricity should come from renewable energy sources by 2030.
What difficulties do you face? Why?
To a community that is currently facing a lot of pushing challenges, encouraging them that there is another one simply as crucial is extremely challenging. I remember trying to explain community solar to my pals and the discussion quickly pivoting to housing. The reality of the matter is, institutional racism and injustice are larger than we understand, and it drowns our community. Where Black people are not being bought, we are being asked to focus on continuously for our survival.
Please share with us a recent company success story.
When I initially moved to Baltimore, the Community Solar Pilot Program was introduced, and I desired to ensure city residents were getting the very same amount of financial investment as the county. Eco-friendly energy has traditionally been a middle-class issue since Black communities have actually had to live in survival mode, however Reverend Mason and Reverend Dewitt brought me into the circle and linked me with the people I required to connect with in order to make this collaboration effective.
To find out more about WeSolar, see wesolar.energy