REC Solar

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REC Solar
Type Private
Industry Solar Energy
Founded 1997
Founder(s) Judy Ledford and Fred Sisson
Headquarters San Luis Obispo, California, U.S.
Area served United States of America
Key people Paul Winnowski — CEO
Products Photovoltaic installations
Employees 850 (2012)
Website RECSolar.com

REC Solar is an installer of solar electric systems in the United States. The company is focused on providing products and services to support residential, commercial, government and utility scale photovoltaic (PV) installations.

Started in 1997 by Judy Ledford and Fred Sisson in San Luis Obispo County, California, REC Solar has grown to serve California, Oregon, Hawaii, Arizona, Colorado and New Jersey through thirteen local offices. Its photovoltaic array installations are designed and installed by in-house engineers who are certified by the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners.

Company history[edit]

Mainstream Energy Corporation purchased REC Solar in 2006, combining it with its other company AEE Solar into a renewable energy portfolio. AEE Solar is a large wholesale distributor of solar energy products like solar panels and inverters.

In 2008, Mainstream Energy in turn received an investment of $40 million in return for a 20% stake in the company belonging to the Renewable Energy Corporation of Norway. Known as the REC Group, the Norwegian company manufactures silicon for incorporation in solar cells and modules in plants throughout Europe and in North America. It sells these products worldwide.[1]

In 2007, Mainstream Energy announced that REC Solar had agreed to install large scale commercial solar arrays for Costco wholesale retailer.[2] These arrays were to be placed on four Costco buildings in western US states, the first being a 680 kW DC installation on the Costco in Kona, Hawaii.[3] These installations are now delivering power.

Larger scale solar power installations have become more economically competitive in an environment of higher energy prices and increasing government incentives. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 includes increases and extensions of a number of tax and subsidy provisions that will enable solar renewable energy projects for Federal buildings, wastewater treatment plants, schools, and most kinds of commercial businesses. A 30% tax credit is available for most residential installations, making payback periods and associated returns on investment competitive.

Included among recent projects, REC Solar installed solar arrays on four campuses of the Poway Unified School District, located in the San Diego, California metro area. School officials believe these systems will supply about 60% of electricity needs and achieve payback in about 15 years under current energy price assumptions.[4] These renewable energy systems are expected to last years beyond that payback date, with on-going energy production at very low cost.

In 2013, REC Solar was listed as the No. 10 solar contractor in the US, specializing in utility, commercial and residential-scale installations, by Solar Power World magazine.[5]

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