At the SXSW Eco conference in Austin, TX, SolarCity and Honda today announced a renewal of their partnership with a new fund expected to finance $50 million in solar projects. The commitment is aimed at making solar power more affordable and available to Honda and Acura customers and dealerships in the U.S.
The two companies have completed or initiated a range of solar projects for homeowners, dealerships and corporate facilities that total more than 12.5 MW of solar generation capacity. They have already brought enough solar capacity online to offset more than 400 million pounds of carbon dioxide over a 30-year lifecycle. The $50 million fund is a follow-up to a $65 million fund the companies created in 2013.
The partnership, which is aimed at addressing air pollution and global climate change by reducing carbon dioxide emissions and particulate emissions from home, business and transportation energy use, covers the cost of solar equipment and installation and makes it possible for many homeowners to pay less for solar electricity than they pay for electricity from utilities, with insurance, repairs and monitoring service included.
"The first phase of this partnership has proven that Honda drivers have a high affinity for solar power, while owners of solar-powered homes have a high affinity for Honda products," said Steven Center, Vice President of the Environmental Business Development Office of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "As we look toward a future in which renewable energy will be an increasingly pervasive fuel source for personal mobility products, we are excited about capitalizing on the technological, environmental and market opportunities available through partnerships of this nature."
Envisioning a future in which personal mobility products will be powered in large part by renewable energy, the two companies have begun implementing co-marketing programs that specifically encourage owners of either solar powered homes or plug-in electric vehicles to adopt the complementary product. The companies have also collaborated on advanced projects that demonstrate the full potential of distributed renewables combined with plug-in electric vehicles, including Honda Smart Home US. SolarCity installed the high-efficiency and cost-effective solar system used in this project.