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 pleased to share the very first installment in our “Accelerating Renewables” blog series. Each installation will include market leaders and topics related to speeding up an equitable and simply transition to a sustainable energy economy. In acknowledgment of National Black Business Month, our August blog is the very first in a series highlighting how Black-owned member companies are prospering in the renewable resource sector.
Kristal Hansley is the Founder & & CEO of WeSolar, Inc and is the countrys first Black lady CEO in the community solar market. Under her leadership, WeSolar is growing quickly, supplying consumers throughout Maryland and the District of Columbia access to budget friendly solar energy, no matter home type, and helping hard-working families minimize regular monthly expenditures.
What inspired you to start your company?
I was at a community meeting with 50 Black ladies organizers who were not invested in the neighborhood solar motion. 36% of Black homes experience a high energy burden, meaning they spend over 6% of their income on house energy bills. To be able to provide a product that will save our community up to 60% on their energy bills is transformative.
Inform us about your company?
WeSolars objective is to bring under-resourced neighborhoods affordable access to local neighborhood solar and to assist commercial homes with energy effectiveness. In Maryland, legislators passed legislation that states 50 percent of its electrical energy need to come from eco-friendly energy sources by 2030.
What challenges do you deal with? Why?
To a neighborhood that is already facing so numerous pressing difficulties, persuading them that there is another one simply as essential is extremely difficult. I keep in mind trying to describe community solar to my pals and the conversation rapidly rotating to real estate. The fact of the matter is, institutional racism and injustice are bigger than we know, and it drowns our community. Where Black individuals are not being purchased, we are being asked to prioritize continuously for our survival.
Please share with us a recent company success story.
A very personal success story for me is cultivating a collaboration with Maryland United Baptist Missionary Convention, Inc. I grew up in a Baptist church in Brooklyn where my cousin was the pastor, and my mom was an organizer– neighborhood was sewn into my extremely being. When I first moved to Baltimore, the Community Solar Pilot Program was launched, and I wanted to ensure city locals were getting the very same amount of financial investment as the county. It was the church that took me in, and the church that then supported my vision– bringing whatever full circle. Renewable resource has historically been a middle-class concern because Black neighborhoods have actually had to reside in survival mode, however Reverend Mason and Reverend Dewitt brought me into the circle and linked me with individuals I required to get in touch with in order to make this collaboration effective.
To find out more about WeSolar, see wesolar.energy
I was at a community meeting with 50 Black females organizers who were not invested in the neighborhood solar movement. To be able to provide a product that will save our community up to 60% on their energy costs is transformative.
WeSolars mission is to bring under-resourced communities affordable access to local community solar and to help business residential or commercial properties with energy performance. When I first moved to Baltimore, the Community Solar Pilot Program was introduced, and I wanted to ensure city residents were receiving the same quantity of investment as the county. Renewable energy has traditionally been a middle-class problem since Black communities have actually had to live in survival mode, however Reverend Mason and Reverend Dewitt brought me into the circle and connected me with the individuals I needed to connect with in order to make this partnership successful.