solar hood

At Sungevity, we’ve known for a long time that the best way to spread solar is neighbor-to-neighbor and friend-to-friend. Customers in our Sunshine Network are solar evangelists who often get their friends and family to go solar too.

So we were happy but not surprised to see the Stanford study that found that for every 1% increase in the number of solar homes in a neighborhood, the length of time before the next solar installation decreases by 1%. Now that might sound trivial to you (if, like me, your math skills topped out in 5th grade). But there’s an exponential effect at play here that causes solar adoption to snowball. John Farrell from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance explains it like this:

If you start with a neighborhood with 25 solar installations, where it was 100 days between the 24th and 25th installation, this peer pressure effect will reduce the time between installations to just 10 days by the 250th [photovoltaic] project.

The graph below shows how this plays out:

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We’d like to thank our customers and all solar homeowners for helping form this giant (and paradoxical) solar snowball!  Keep it up and solar homes will some day soon become the new normal.

Posted by Danny Kennedy

Danny Kennedy co-founded Sungevity and now serves as strategic advisor. He is an internationally recognized opinion leader on climate and energy issues. He is the author of Rooftop Revolution: How Solar Power Can Save Our Economy - and Planet - from Dirty Energy (2012), a book that has been described as the clean energy manifesto for the next greatest generation.