f Equator Energy

1. Is my site suitable for a solar power system?

The answer is: most likely yes. We can offer cost-competitive solar solutions in almost all locations within our markets. There are, however, a number of technical details that we need to check. We do this as part of our free solar audit. For example, we need to review your current electricity consumption and how it varies throughout the day, week, month and year. We will also have to determine how much suitable space you have available for a solar power system and how complex the integration of the system will be at your site.

Once we have these details we prepare a preliminary design. If the result is positive, we make you a firm offer for buying or leasing the solar system from us.

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2. How much does solar energy cost? How much do I save?

The sunnier it is at a location, the higher your savings will be. Also, the more you rely on diesel for your electricity consumption, the higher your savings will be. Another factor is how simple or complex the integration of our solar system will be at your site.

We review all these and other factors during our solar audit. We then use them in our preliminary design to make you a firm offer with an exact purchase price or leasing rate and predictable savings.

As an example, take a look at the graph on the side here. These are the calculations for a sample 500 kW solar power system installed in Nairobi at a business that gets 25% of its daytime electricity from diesel generators. With our SLA this solar system would generate savings of around 50,000 USD in the first year. After this, the savings increase to over 250,000 USD by the end of the lease. The savings increase because our solar lease rate does not rise as fast as regular electricity costs. The savings over the 25 year term reach to just above 3 million USD.

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3. How much of my energy needs can you supply with solar power?

With a regular grid-tied solar power system we can typically replace up to 50% of your current electricity consumption with cheaper, clean solar energy. And if most of your electricity is consumed during the daytime, then this percentage can be even higher.

With net-metering systems we replace anywhere between 50% and almost 100% of your energy consumption with solar energy. How much of your energy consumption can come from solar power depends on the net-metering regulations in your country.

Off-grid/"island" systems by definition are always designed to supply 100% of your energy needs with solar energy. These systems have a large amount of spare battery capacity in order to get you through long spells of bad weather.

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4. Can I sell your solar electricity onwards to the electricity grid?

This depends on whether net metering is currently allowed at your site.

If not, we will program the solar power system as a captive system that never feeds electricity back into the public power grid. If it is allowed now, then you can feed our solar electricity back into the public grid and get paid for it.

Lastly, if net metering becomes an option at your site in the future, we will let you know. We can then even discuss expanding the solar power system, so that you generate additional solar electricity to sell it to the grid at a profit.

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5. What do I need to do to get a solar power system?

Getting started is simple. Write to us through our website here. Or just give us a call.

We will then arrange to get started on your free solar audit with you and take it from there. Within a few months after that you can start to save on energy costs with one of our solar power systems.

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6. How soon can I get a solar power system?

From the free solar audit it usually takes us less than two weeks to complete our preliminary design and make you a firm offer. Once the firm offer has been accepted and the power purchase agreement (PPA) or solar lease agreement (SLA) has been signed, we typically have your system shipped to your site and installed within around two to four months.

That means, best case we can get you started on energy cost savings with one of our solar systems within around three months from when you first contact us. Or say four months, if it's a very large solar system.

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7. What is the difference between an outright purchase agreement and a solar lease agreement (SLA)?

Under an outright purchase agreement, you simply buy a solar system. You then own the system and you can finance your investment through your own bank, for example.

Under the SLA we provide the solar system to you on an operational lease basis. This means you pay a fixed monthly charge for using the system to generate your own electricity. The system remains our property and we will take care of its operation, maintenance, insurance and everything else. We also guarantee you that you how much you will effectly pay per kWh under the SLA.   

Our SLA are industry standard contracts. We use the standard contracts developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) working group for Solar Access to Public Capital (SAPC) adapted to local legislation, rules and regulations. 

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8. How long does the SLA run for? What happens at the end of the SLA?

Our SPAs come with a standard 20-year term. For those 20 years we guarantee you energy cost savings and we make sure that the solar system keeps on working smoothly.

At the end of 20 years you have three options. We can extend the agreement for another 10 years. We can replace the solar power system with a new one and enter into a new SLA. Or you can simply ask us to remove the solar power system free of charge, of course.

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9. What happens when I sell my home, factory, or site?

This is not a problem. If you bought the solar system outright, you can sell it or move it to your new site. We can help you with this. Under the SLA, usually the buyer of your home, factory or other site can simply take over the SLA from you. Since our solar power system will save energy expenses for the future buyer, you may even be able to get a higher sales price with our system than without. Alternatively, we can usually move the solar system to your new location. 

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10. Can I later buy the solar power system if I sign and SLA?

Yes, absolutely. After 5 years of operation, all our SLA customers have the option to purchase the solar power system from us anytime they chose. We will offer the system to you at a competitive price along with a full service package including monitoring, maintenance and insurance for the system's lifetime.  

If you prefer, you can also buy your own solar power system right from the start.

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11. Why work with Equator Energy?

When you work with us, we offer you an innovative, zero up-front cost way to benefit from cheaper solar energy. We are experienced and our solar power systems are tried and tested. Because we will own and operate the solar systems ourselves, we will never compromise on quality.

Working with us, means you need to deal with only one party, Equator Energy. We deliver a turn-key, hassle free solution.

We have over a decade’s worth of experience in commercial and industrial scale solar. We have a strong track record and own our own portfolio of solar systems across Africa and Europe.

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