By Carlos Solórzano, CEO, Hispanic Chambers of Commerce of San Francisco
The Hispanic Chambers of Commerce of San Francisco unites four smaller ethnic chambers and businesses across the Bay Area in business and procurement opportunities. We represent a broad range of businesses throughout the city and the Bay Area, and we are the Latino voice of our small business community.
As we increase our small business creation, we also increase home ownership. As homeowners, our members are always looking for ways to cut costs and save money. That is the reason I personally decided to add rooftop solar for my own home. We see the benefits of saving and we also see rooftop solar energy as an opportunity to save money and grow their business.
Our utility costs tend to rise every year, but with rooftop solar, it allows lower and more predictable rates. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the average household spends $1,322/year on energy bills. With so many solar financing options available, a homeowner can save on his or her energy bill and put hard-earned money where it’s needed most–– savings funds and retirement.
It is not easy running a business in today’s economy, especially when faced with high energy costs. These types of savings can go a long way. As a small business owner myself, I appreciate any opportunity I can get to cut costs and have more control over every item in my budget.
Our members want to take advantage of rooftop solar, and we are excited about the potential of partnership with the industry, and procurement opportunities for our members. This is why we support net metering and believe it is essential that the California Public Utilities Commission preserve this policy in our state.
Net metering is a state policy that allows residential and commercial customers who generate their own electricity from solar power to feed electricity they do not use back into the energy grid. The goal of net metering is to provide fair bill credit to the customer who is contributing to the electric supply and drive private investment.
In California, net metering has supported more than $10 billion in private investment and helped create over 50,000 jobs across the state. Being on the cutting edge of the rooftop solar movement has only helped our state thrive and makes it a better place to do business.
Net metering and rooftop solar stand to be a boon for the Latino businesses and community. Our families can benefit from the 10–20% average savings on their monthly utility bills. We also will benefit from having cleaner energy sources power our community instead of the dirtier power sources that have had a number of health costs for our families.
It is too often that the Latino community is left out of conversations like this or only learns once it is too late. This is why we are speaking out and asking the California Public Utilities Commission to protect rooftop solar and help us bring this benefit to Latino homeowners and small businesses.
As the California Public Utilities Commission meets to determine the future of net metering and rooftop solar in our state, we hope they take into account the potential savings and business opportunities for Latino small businesses and homeowners.
About the Author: Carlos E. Solórzano-Cuadra is the founder of Multi Vision Latina, (MVL) a leading International Multi Services, Corporate Matching, and Business consulting and Public Relations agency, established in the US in 2007. Although new as Multi Vision Latina, (MVL), his principal and affiliates have over fifty years’ experience serving small businesses, corporations, and working with affiliates agencies in the US, and Latin America.
Carlos is also the CEO of the Hispanic Chambers of Commerce of San Francisco. He has strong background as a chamber and business executive with over 20 years of experience. He has served in the Solano Hispanic Chamber of Commerce as board member and president, as well as Executive Director of the Nicaraguan-American, the Latin American and Caribbean, and the San Francisco Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. He also served as a director of the California HCC, representing the Northern Region chamber at state level.
Image: solar installation via Shutterstock
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