Solar forum to shine light on business opportunities |

Solar forum to shine light on business opportunities

Special to NNBW

The benefits for businesses installing solar energy systems is the focus of a forum to be held the afternoon of Wednesday, August 16, 2017, at the University of Nevada, Reno’s Innevation Center, 450 Sinclair St., Reno.

“We’re pleased to bring regional and state experts in solar energy and finance together with businesses in Northern Nevada,” said Steve Polikalas, attorney and forum moderator. “The forum will provide a good first step for local companies interested in exploring what solar opportunities may be cost-effective for their properties.”

The timing of installing a solar electric system is important because of expected changes in the areas of tax credits and financing for solar projects.

“There’s a compelling case for companies in Nevada interested in generating their own clean, renewable energy to begin the process now,” notes Randy Kauffman of Next Energy, one of the sponsors of the event. “Available federal tax credits for solar energy systems are likely at their peak, as is the value of any surplus power generated by a business’s solar energy system.”

“There are currently several excellent financing opportunities for government entities as well as businesses interested in going solar,” says Paul Bony, who provides financial consulting on behalf of the Electric & Gas Industries Association.

“A number of lenders and financiers are able to take advantage of the existing federal tax credits and thereby offer very good terms to government entities who don’t have federal tax liability,” explain Bony. “The terms available to businesses investing in solar at this point in time make it a very attractive investment, and one that doesn’t have to be financed internally.”

The forum will include a review of the 2017 Nevada Legislative Session and legislation related to solar energy, presented by Kyle Davis of the Nevada Conservation League.

Robert Johnston of Western Resource Advocates will address the topic of Net Metering and utility incentives.

Federal grants and loans available to businesses in rural Nevada will be explained by Mark Williams, the Energy Program Coordinator of the USDA’s Nevada Office.

Jared Fisher, owner of Escape Adventures Inc., will discuss why more Nevada businesses should “go solar.” A 57 kiloWatt (kW) solar system Fisher installed on his own building helped it earn a LEED Platinum rating, the highest rating possible from the US Green Building Council.

Randy Kaufmann of NextEnergy will describe how solar energy can make financial sense for a business based on existing tax credits and other incentives.

Energy finance expert Paul Bony will review financing opportunities for private businesses and public entities pursuing renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.

The forum will run from 1:00-4:30 p.m. Registration is available online at Eventbrite for $20 or $35 at the door.

For more information, sponsorships and exhibit spaces call 775-386-5441.