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 delighted to share the very first installment in our “Accelerating Renewables” blog site series. Each installment will include market leaders and topics related to speeding up a fair and simply transition to a renewable resource economy. In recognition of National Black Business Month, our August blog is the first in a series highlighting how Black-owned member companies are prospering in the sustainable energy sector.
Kristal Hansley is the Founder & & CEO of WeSolar, Inc and is the nations first Black lady CEO in the neighborhood solar market. Under her management, WeSolar is growing quickly, offering customers throughout Maryland and the District of Columbia access to cost effective solar power, no matter house type, and helping hard-working families decrease regular monthly expenditures.
What inspired you to begin your company?
The stark reality that the bulk of households who were getting sustainable energy incentives were higher income. I remember learning this and thinking there had to be a method to address this gap. I discovered there was a problem. I had my own concepts on how to fix it, and I wished to have company over my own choices. I was at a community conference with 50 Black females organizers who were not invested in the community solar movement. When I began to describe how crucial and immediate it was for us to be a part of the solar motion, it seemed like a lightbulb had actually turned on for me. I began demonstrating how higher-income neighborhoods and individuals in the residential areas were making the most of sustainable tax incentives and had actually gotten a ton of support. The truth is, energy use impacts Black home budget plans greatly. 36% of Black homes experience a high energy concern, indicating they invest over 6% of their earnings on home energy expenses. Thats an enormous portion. To be able to provide an item that will conserve our neighborhood approximately 60% on their energy expenses is transformative.
Inform us about your company?
WeSolars objective is to bring under-resourced communities inexpensive access to local community solar and to assist commercial properties with energy performance. WeSolar introduced in Baltimore and will expand to other cities in the future. Through WeSolar, electrical power consumers can purchase shared solar from a local job without having to set up any devices in their homes. In turn, locals save hundreds on their electrical power bills. In Maryland, legislators passed legislation that mentions 50 percent of its electrical energy must originate from renewable resource sources by 2030.
What obstacles do you deal with? Why?
To a neighborhood that is already dealing with many pressing difficulties, convincing them that there is another one just as crucial is very tough. I keep in mind attempting to discuss community solar to my good friends and the conversation quickly pivoting to housing. The truth of the matter is, institutional bigotry and injustice are larger than we understand, and it drowns our neighborhood. Where Black individuals are not being invested in, we are being asked to focus on constantly for our survival.
Please show us a recent company success story.
When I first moved to Baltimore, the Community Solar Pilot Program was launched, and I wanted to ensure city citizens were receiving the same amount of investment as the county. Eco-friendly energy has actually traditionally been a middle-class concern due to the fact that Black neighborhoods have actually had to live in survival mode, however Reverend Mason and Reverend Dewitt brought me into the circle and linked me with the individuals I needed to connect with in order to make this collaboration effective.
To read more about WeSolar, see wesolar.energy
I was at a community meeting with 50 Black females organizers who were not invested in the community solar movement. To be able to provide an item that will save our community up to 60% on their energy expenses is transformative.
WeSolars objective is to bring under-resourced neighborhoods affordable access to local community solar and to assist industrial properties with energy performance. When I first moved to Baltimore, the Community Solar Pilot Program was launched, and I wanted to guarantee city citizens were receiving the same amount of investment as the county. Renewable energy has traditionally been a middle-class concern since Black neighborhoods 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 required to connect with in order to make this collaboration effective.