JE Dunn

Velo Solar: A Design-Build Approach to Renewable Energy Solutions

• Updated on June 30, 2022 • [rt_reading_time postfix=”minute”] read

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In the emerging environmental, social, and governance (ESG) space, reducing carbon emissions has become the topmost priority for organizations of all sizes, with decarbonization becoming the buzzword across industries. And as price correction in the fossil fuel markets brings higher electricity costs to corporate and industrial consumers, solar is gradually cementing its position as the most accessible, affordable, and visible way for businesses to decarbonize their electricity generation and usage. However, some threethousand odd utilities with individual policies and solar value models, multiple state and local jurisdictions, and the lack of visibility into real-time energy data sow confusion. These roadblocks make investing in and managing solar energy systems daunting for most commercial businesses.

In a single stroke, Velo Solar addresses the diverse financial, regulatory, and technological needs of organizations seeking to implement and optimize their solar energy management. The full-service solar energy company provides turnkey solar installations, real-time energy management tracking, and operations and maintenance services to enterprises. Velo Solar’s design-build approach to devising holistic, custom solar energy solutions makes it stand out in the renewable energy services market. “We take a consultative approach to guide clients in assessing their present solar energy usage and design energy management solutions to power their businesses in the future,” says Thatcher Young, VP of Business Development at Velo Solar.

Be it on-site solar power generation or energy storage issues, electricity usage across a facility, or energy bills disputes with power utilities, Velo Solar performs a deepdive analysis of all of their clients’ energy data right down to 15-minute intervals. Following the analysis, the company creates bespoke energy solutions for clients, catering to their diverse needs, goals, and budgetary and risk considerations. Also, operating in the low energy costs markets of the southeastern US, the company develops solar-generating solutions that often still lower electricity costs for clients.

A Robust Energy Monitoring System

Conventional energy management systems usually fail to provide deep granular visibility into energy usage data for most small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Velo Solar offers a cost-effective way to unlock and gain an in-depth understanding of their energy data down to facility levels with its proprietary energy monitoring software PowerEnfoTM. Enabling the software is Velo Solar’s IoT meter, which can measure individual energy flows through vast amounts of circuits when placed in line with the facilities’ main energy switchgear. The meter can also monitor environmental inputs like water and fuel usage. With the IoT meter communicating energy data from the facilities to the cloud via PowerEnfoTM, Velo Solar gains a detailed understanding of the energy usage patterns in the facilities. This immensely helps the company to design optimized solar solutions and batteries for clients, as well as provide them tailored recommendations on energy efficiency opportunities.

With PowerEnfoTM, Velo Solar is able to monitor the status of enterprises’ solar systems, energy storage systems, batteries, inverters, generators, and microgrids, identify and rectify performance issues with the components by sending technicians to fix them, and provide real-time insights on businesses’ overall energy use. The software also enables enterprises to auto-generate multiple daily, weekly, and monthly reports on their energy usage, offset, carbon reduction et al. This confers a massive advantage to SMBs who can finally have access to near real-time energy data that they otherwise had to pay hefty amounts to procure from utilities.

Solar panels on a building in Atlanta

The best part is that Velo Solar’s solution is highly costeffective, with both the hardware and software components of its energy management system and its installation costing a fraction of similar systems in the marketplace.

Facilitating Energy Savings toward a Decarbonized Future

To showcase Velo Solar in action, Young recounts a recent instance wherein one of their industrial clients from the state of Georgia wanted better ROI on their previously installed solar energy system. While the system served the client company well, it yielded poor financial results due to the high cost at the time of installation. Velo Solar, along with solar industry allies, laid the path to the implementation of net metering for their client’s existing system by lobbying to the state’s public service commission to enhance the value of the client’s solar investment. With net metering, the client company was able to justify the doubling of their solar system size by remaining well within the limits set by the utilities, which resulted in better savings on energy bills. “We’re right now installing this expanded system over the next couple of weeks to double the energy savings that our client is seeing from their solar energy investment,” informs Young.

That’s not all. Velo Solar also actively engages with public and regulatory policymaking entities to improve economic outcomes and the business environment for clients. With company president Mark Bell as well as Young himself serving on the boards of various solar energy associations across Georgia, Velo Solar is striving hard to get the legislation passed for the implementation of monthly net metering across utilities in the state.

Going forward, Velo Solar intends to focus more on its home markets. In the coming five years, the company aims to become the numero uno commercial solar design-build firm in Georgia as well as the entire southeastern US, with a second office in Savannah, GA, as a stepping stone to the goal. Simultaneously, Velo Solar will be taking PowerEnfoTM to the next level by releasing a range of interesting carbon accounting software solutions by year-end. By growing its software-as-a-service and energy services business, Velo Solar is on a clear path to becoming far more diversified and robust with its unique design-build solutions.

Published original at Energy Business Review
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