City launches second Solarize Mercer Island campaign; workshops begin June 26th

June 18, 2018 | by Julia Hess

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​Due to popular demand, the City of Mercer Island has launched its second Solarize Mercer Island campaign in four years.

Solarize is an innovative group purchase program that helps residents and businesses tap into more affordable solar energy. Building on the success of the previous solar campaign in 2014, which led to almost 50 new installations, the City is partnering with the citizens’ group Sustainable Mercer Island and the local non-profit Spark Northwest to work with a community-selected, qualified solar installer.

For residents who have been contemplating rooftop solar, or for those who missed out last time, now is the time to act, and here are some reasons why:

  • Solar is more cost-effective than ever before.
  • You can qualify for a 30% federal tax rebate (until December 2019).
  • You can receive a time-limited, group-purchasing discount.
  • There are generous WA state incentives expiring soon!

The first step is to attend a free workshop to learn more and qualify for a FREE site assessment of your roof’s potential. Workshop dates, times, and locations are as follows:

  • Tuesday, June 26th: 6:30 – 8 pm, Mercer Island Community & Event Center
  • Wednesday, July 18th: 6:30 – 8 pm, Mercer Island Community & Event Center
  • Saturday, September 15th: 10 – 11:30, Islander Middle School
  • Tuesday, Oct 9th: 6 – 7:30 pm, Congregational Church on Mercer Island

Workshop registration is handled on their partner website, Spark Northwest. Look for Solarize outreach booths this summer at the Farmers Market (June) and Summer Celebration (July).

In January 2018, the City of Mercer Island received national SolSmart Gold designation for meeting stringent and objective criteria targeting removal of obstacles to solar development, indicating that it is “open for solar business.” Gold status in particular indicates a lack of procedural obstacles, such as long permitting waiting times or burdensome zoning regulations.

Mercer Island has a greenhouse gas (GHG) target of 80% reduction by 2050, and renewable energy is an important part of the suite of community actions that can help reach that goal. Most standard residential solar installations do not need a building permit, just a simple electrical permit which takes a few minutes to receive in person at City Hall.

For more information, or to read more about the City’s range of solar programs, visit the City’s website or email Ross Freeman, Sustainability Manager.

Learn more about Mercer Island’s Conservation and Sustainability efforts on their website >>