Business Owners are Taking Solar Serious in 2020

Being a business owner has you in the market thinking competitively. As a business owner, you are constantly looking at ways to lower costs while increase margins. It may seem too complex to even consider solar, but the topic isn’t going away and actually it's more of a hot topic now than you realize.

If you are one that has to "see what others are doing..." before you make a move, here’s a list of Fortune 500 companies that have gone solar already:

Microsoft Corporation

Microsoft is powered entirely by solar and wind. The tech giant also has an annual green power usage of 4,557,278,000 kWh. Microsoft is one of two Fortune 500 companies that gets all its energy from renewable resources.

Intel Corporation

Intel Corp. is the other Fortune 500 company to get all its energy from renewable resources. While Microsoft uses solar and wind, Intel uses solar, wind, small hydro, geothermal, and biomass technologies. Intel has an annual green power usage of 4,152,034,623 kWh.

Kohl’s Department Stores

Kohl’s makes the ideal example of how solar energy can make a difference in a retail environment. The company’s solar and wind systems generate 15% more energy than it uses, and its annual green power usage is 1,429,423,791 kWh.

Apple, Inc.

Apple, Inc. is powered entirely by solar, wind, biogas, biomass, and small-hydro energy systems. The world’s most popular smartphone manufacturer uses 1,173,352,630 kWh of green energy every year.

Capital One

Capital One is not only a leading provider of banking and financial services, but it is also powered by a variety of different renewable sources, including solar. In fact, Capital One’s systems generate 114% of its annual green power usage, which is 467,587,957 kWh.

Netflix, Inc.

Netflix has had a significant impact on how people all over the world get their entertainment. The streaming giant is known for innovation and that commitment is likewise seen in its energy resources. Netflix only uses 100,057,534 kWh of energy per year and it uses solar, small-hydro, geothermal, wind, biogas, and biomass to generate 198% more energy that the company needs!

The North Face

The North Face is another retailer that has embraced solar energy and like many on this list, its systems produce more energy than the company uses, 15% more, in fact. The North Face only uses 21,778,186 kWh of green power per year as it is.


BD is a global technology company that caters to the medical field. The company uses 558,700,386 kWh of energy every year and all of it comes directly from renewable resources. BD uses solar and wind systems as its only sources of energy.

Cisco Systems, Inc.

Cisco Systems, Inc, is one of the largest manufacturers of technology and telecom products in the world. It uses 1,106,969,859 kWh of energy and 100% of it is delivered by solar and wind systems.

BNY Mellon

BNY Mellon is a Fortune 500 company and one of the largest banking and financial service providers to go 100% green. The company has an annual green power usage of 290,106,378 kWh and its renewable solar and wind energy sources produce 5% more energy than BNY Mellon uses.

Time to wave off that old way of thinking and join the growing chorus of smart business owners that have discovered the commercial solar benefits for business. Solar isn’t just for Intel and Wal-Mart anymore. Businesses of all sizes are capitalizing on the financial opportunities of installing solar, proving that a solar energy system is a key strategic decision that virtually guarantees a solid financial return for your business.

This is a financial decision and data driven. So, let’s explore the details:

According to EnergySage marketplace data, the average commercial property owner paid $1,950 in monthly electricity bills before going solar. After their installation, their electricity bill was reduced to approximately $500 ­­– a 75% reduction.

The cost of buying and installing solar panels has dropped considerably in the last ten years while electricity prices continue to skyrocket (Prime example is Jacksonville Electric rates expected to increase 52% in 2020), making the economics of solar even more attainable. But decreased equipment and installation costs aren’t the only reason for your business to go solar.

There are other factors that can reduce your business’s out-of-pocket cost for a solar panel system, including:

>> Federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC): This is the most significant financial benefit for anyone interested in using solar panels at their business or residence. Owners of newly installed solar panel systems get a federal tax credit for 26 percent of the cost of the system.

>> Accelerated depreciation: Businesses can deduct 85 percent of the value of the solar asset from their taxes, providing another significant offset to the upfront cost of a system array.

>> Performance-based incentives (PBIs): PBIs, including solar renewable energy certificates, are a way for solar owners in some markets to receive payment from their utility for the solar electricity that their system generates. These incentives can be significant and greatly enhance financial returns for system owners over the life of the system.

As you can see, the numbers continue to add up – solar panel systems are a smart capital investment for businesses. They have short ROI’s, provide steady financial returns, and help business owners hedge and leverage against rising energy prices.

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