by Maura Cowley, Executive Director, Energy Action Coalition
Two years ago at Power Shift 2011, Energy Action Coalition co-founder Billy Parish unveiled a revolutionary new idea:
What if thousands of us, as a movement, could pool small amounts of money to turn solar projects in our communities into crowd-funded realities?
Today, Billy’s new platform Mosaic, a “Kickstarter for Solar” is launching and making it easy to do just that; now everyday people like you and me can invest directly in renewable energy. If you live in New York or California, or if you’re an “accredited investor” in other states, you can log-in, pick a solar project that you like, make an investment for as little as $25, and get returns starting at 4.5% annually.
It may sound crazy, but it’s for real. For the first time ever, people like you and me can invest directly in solar projects and earn real returns. No longer do we need to wait on banks and politicians to make renewable energy a reality; we can do it ourselves!
Here’s how it works: Mosaic connects small investors to solar projects that need some investment. The projects generate revenue by selling the electricity they generate, which allows the investors to get paid back with interest.
Since Billy made that announcement at Power Shift 2011, Mosaic has already mobilized hundreds of people to invest over $1.1M into twelve solar projects across the country.
Across the country young people are doing incredible things, from wielding our political power to stop Keystone XL, to using our student power to call for fossil fuel divestment on campus. Now with Mosaic we can crowd-fund renewable energy to create the clean energy economy we dream of. Let’s help kick if off to a strong start by making it one of our first acts of the new year.