FAQ

What is community solar?

Community solar gives everyone the opportunity to share in the benefits of clean solar energy without rooftop installations.

Community solar is ideal for homeowners, renters or businesses with shaded rooftops, as well as churches and other houses of worship that cannot take advantage of tax incentives because they don’t pay taxes.

Here’s how it works:

  • Solar arrays are built on rural land; typically, non-producing farmland and other “brownfield” sites, like landfills or quarries. The electricity produced on the solar farm goes into the local utility grid.
  • Each month, the utility credits customers’ bills with the value of the solar electricity produced at the farm.
  • Customers then pay the utility or Solar Farms New York for the solar credits each month.
  • Customers don’t receive solar electricity directly from the solar farm. Rather, they benefit indirectly by increasing the amount of renewable energy the utility uses each month to supply all customers.
How is Solar Farms New York different?

Solar Farms New York represents one of the largest owners of solar farms in the United States. Our job is to help customers take advantage of the solar electricity generated by these farms.

Solar Farms New York is NOT a retail electricity marketer that charges you for so-called “green energy.” With Solar Farms New York you receive:

  • Monthly solar credits from solar electricity produced in New York State, NOT wind credits from other states like Texas
  • An honest, straightforward benefits plan, NOT questionable promises about savings
Does it cost anything to enroll?

It’s free to sign up and there are no long-term contracts or hidden fees. You can cancel any time at no cost or you can take your Solar Benefits Package with you if you move within your utility service area. If you’re moving, let us know and we’ll confirm whether you’re still eligible.

What if this month is cloudy and the sun isn’t shining as much?

Photovoltaic panels use direct or indirect sunlight to generate electricity. Panels are most effective in direct sunlight but still work even when the light is reflected or partially blocked by clouds.

Will I save money?

Our discount plan guarantees 10% savings on solar credits applied to your utility bill. Therefore, if you receive $100 in solar credits, you pay $90 – it’s that simple.

How do I see my savings?

Each month, customers will see solar credits on their utility bill for the portion of solar power allocated to their account. Customers will receive one consolidated bill from their utility, showing their credits and 10% discount, every month.

Some customers may choose to see their savings faster by forgoing consolidated billing. These customers will receive a bill from their utility showing their solar credits, and then receive a separate bill from Solar Farms New York for the value of those credits, with a 10% discount applied. 

What is the environmental impact of solar farms?

Solar farms generate electricity from the sun’s rays. Solar power is a form of renewable energy, like wind energy or energy generated by the motion of waves in the ocean. Renewable energy offers a clean and affordable alternative to burning fossil fuels — and our solar farms help harness it for you to use.

Renewable energy displaces fossil fuels like natural gas, coal and fuel oil, which reduces or eliminates carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide emissions from power plants.

Solar farms are not without their critics. In some states, productive farmland could be covered with solar panels, preventing the growth of crops. We at Solar Farms New York prefer to support solar farms that are built on so-called “brownfields,” which is land that is not productive farmland, such as landfills, rocky soil and quarry sites.

What are the benefits of Solar Farms New York?

Simply put, clean energy generated with 100% New York sunshine!

Community solar allows homeowners, renters and businesses to share the benefit of clean solar energy without the hassle or cost of installing panels.

Your community also benefits through our Clean Energy Partner program. Solar Farms New York has contributed over $90,000 to community organizations that have joined us as Clean Energy Partners.

Can I refer my friends and family to Solar Farms New York?

Of course! If you refer someone to Solar Farms New York and they enroll, both the enrollee and the referrer will receive a $50 Visa gift card. And, even if you have rooftop solar panels making you ineligible to join, you can still refer somebody and get a $50 Visa gift card. For more information about the referral program, call us at 315-512-5322.

Am I switching electricity providers?

No, you’re all set! Whether you receive your electricity from the utility or a third-party energy service company (ESCO), your electricity supplier will remain the same!

What is Consolidated Billing?

Consolidated Billing means you get one bill from your utility provider, in this case NYSEG. There is no disruption to you service. Your 10% discount will simply appear on your utility bill. You won’t receive any additional bills from Solar Farms New York for solar credits and there is nothing you need to do to activate your discount. Once you sign up, you’ll automatically be enrolled in consolidated billing. 

    I have other questions – whom should I ask?

    You can call us at 315-512-5322. We’re available Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.