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Google Invests $300 Million to Cover Solar Panel Installation Costs

Google is contributing $300 million to a $750 million SolarCity fund that will help users in 14 states and the District of Columbia cover the up-front costs of installing home solar collectors.

“The growth of such financing has made generating electric power from the sun an option for households that do not want to shell out the $20,000 to $30,000 up-front cost of a typical residential solar system,” Reuters reports [1].

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The deal brings Google’s renewable energy investments to $1.8 billion and “reflects the success of renewable energy companies in tapping into a broader pool of investors with financial products that emerged in the past three years,” notes Bloomberg. The new financing tools “helped boost investment in clean energy 16%, to a record $310 billion last year.”

Martin says Google “is supporting a variety of new technologies, ranging from driverless cars to mobile-phone payments. Successful companies such as Google and Apple Inc. that have amassed large piles of cash are under increasing pressure to find profitable ways to use their money, and some are supporting new concepts and infrastructure that may have long-term benefits for the planet that go beyond the bottom line.”