Renewable Power Perspectives Q&A with Kristal Hansley, Founder & CEO of WeSolar, Inc.
By Constance ThompsonAugust 27, 2021
The American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) is happy to share the very first installation in our “Accelerating Renewables” blog site series. Each installation will feature market leaders and subjects connected to accelerating an equitable and just transition to a sustainable energy economy. In recognition of National Black Business Month, our August blog is the very first in a series highlighting how Black-owned member business are thriving in the sustainable 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 quickly, providing customers throughout Maryland and the District of Columbia access to cost effective solar power, regardless of house type, and assisting hard-working households minimize monthly expenditures.
What inspired you to start your company?
The plain fact that the majority of homes who were receiving renewable resource rewards were greater earnings. I keep in mind learning this and believing there had to be a way to address this space. I noticed there was a problem. I had my own concepts on how to resolve it, and I wished to have agency over my own decisions. I was at a neighborhood conference with 50 Black women organizers who were not bought the community solar movement. Once I began to explain how crucial and urgent it was for us to be a part of the solar movement, it seemed like a lightbulb had actually turned on for me. I started showing how higher-income neighborhoods and people in the residential areas were taking advantage of sustainable tax rewards and had gotten a heap of assistance. The fact is, energy usage effects Black home spending plans significantly. 36% of Black families experience a high energy burden, implying they invest over 6% of their earnings on house energy expenses. Thats a massive portion. To be able to use an item that will save our neighborhood approximately 60% on their energy expenses is transformative.
Inform us about your company?
WeSolars objective is to bring under-resourced communities affordable access to regional community solar and to assist business homes with energy performance. WeSolar released in Baltimore and will expand to other cities in the future. Through WeSolar, electricity customers can purchase shared solar from a regional task without having to install any devices in their homes. In turn, homeowners conserve hundreds on their electrical energy bills. In Maryland, lawmakers passed legislation that states 50 percent of its electricity should originate from sustainable energy sources by 2030.
What challenges do you deal with? Why?
To a community that is already facing many pushing obstacles, convincing them that there is another one simply as important is extremely challenging. I remember trying to explain neighborhood solar to my pals and the discussion quickly pivoting to housing. The fact of the matter is, institutional racism and oppression are bigger than we know, and it drowns our neighborhood. Where Black individuals are not being invested in, we are being asked to focus on continuously for our survival.
Please show us a current business success story.
When I initially moved to Baltimore, the Community Solar Pilot Program was released, and I desired to guarantee city citizens were receiving the exact same quantity of investment as the county. Sustainable energy has traditionally been a middle-class concern because Black neighborhoods have had to live in survival mode, however Reverend Mason and Reverend Dewitt brought me into the circle and linked me with the individuals I required to connect with in order to make this partnership successful.
To find out more about WeSolar, see wesolar.energy
I was at a neighborhood conference with 50 Black ladies organizers who were not invested in the neighborhood solar motion. To be able to offer an item that will save our community up to 60% on their energy bills is transformative.
WeSolars mission is to bring under-resourced communities budget-friendly access to local community solar and to assist business homes with energy efficiency. When I initially moved to Baltimore, the Community Solar Pilot Program was released, and I desired to make sure city citizens were getting the same quantity of financial investment as the county. Sustainable energy has actually historically been a middle-class problem since Black communities have 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 link with in order to make this partnership effective.