Solar For All: An interview with Mel Bergsneider of Allume Energy

In 2023, Allume Energy announced the successful commissioning of its Solshare technology in a residential  building owned and operated by Belhaven Residential in Jackson, Mississippi, aiming to help advance solar energy in a currently underserved market. Solshare enables the sharing of rooftop solar across multiple apartments in the same building, without the need to adjust the existing electricity supply, with potential savings on electricity bills of up to 40 percent. REM had a quick chat with Allume Energy Executive Accounts Manager Mel Bergsneider to find out a bit more about what’s going on with solar in Mississippi.
Solar For All: An interview with Mel Bergsneider of Allume Energy
Mel Bergsneider, Executive Accounts Manager at Allume Energy. Courtesy of Allume Energy.

Can you introduce yourself and Allume Energy and give me a bit of background about the company.

My name is Mel Bergsneider, Executive Accounts Manager at Allume Energy. More than 2M Australians, 15M Americans, and 300M Europeans live in low and medium rise apartment buildings, with the roof space for solar, but no way of accessing it.

We developed SolShare to bridge this gap. SolShare enables solar for apartments by sharing energy from a single rooftop solar system between multiple dwellings within the same building.

This breaks down the technical and ownership barriers that have historically prevented apartment residents from accessing cheaper and cleaner energy from the sun.

With an established market in Australia, Allume is now rapidly growing in the UK and the US.

How is Mississippi doing with regard to solar PV?

Mississippi ranks as the 36th solar state, according to Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). Mississippi also has a growth projection of 2,215 MW solar installed over the next five years.

Why hasn’t solar PV increased in the state compared to other areas of the US?

Solar PV has traditionally been reserved for higher income households. As the technology becomes more accessible and affordable, we are seeing wider implementation across states.

How much residential solar PV is there in the state?

Mississippi has 576 MW of solar installed as of 2023. This is equivalent to $632 million in solar investments in the state.

What is Mississipi’s solar potential?

Mississippi’s solar potential is 2,215 MW over the next 5 years. We anticipate that with a mix of Inflation Reduction Act incentives, and technologies like the SolShare, states that have previously been behind in solar adoption, will start to catch up with the rest.

Why is there no state-specific solar incentives in Mississippi? Is this situation changing, and if so how?

Mississippi offers a variety of incentives for solar installations. For example, the In 2022, the Mississippi Public Service Commission implemented a program that pays homeowners a one-time rebate of up to $3,500 for installing a solar system between 3 kW and 20 kW.

Last year, Allume Energy launched a video looking at energy equity among renters in Mississippi. What has happened with this since then?

Allume continues to expand project deployment in the Southeast and recently announced our expansion into the midwest.

What has been the effect of the Solshare technology on electricity bills?

Tenants are seeing a range of $38-$54 utility savings per month across our projects. It demonstrates how solar benefits can expand to apartment renters through SolShare implementation.

For additional information:

Allume Energy

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