Trees & Solar: The Site Survey Connection

We’re blessed with both a lot of sunshine and a lot of trees in Southern Oregon. Sometimes the very trees we love the most block our solar access and make siting a solar electric system difficult. So, how do we coexist with trees, deal with shading issues, get the most out of our solar electric systems, and do the right thing for the environment? The answer begins by hiring the right solar professionals. 

Customers need to know how much a tree’s shade is going to influence the output of a solar electric system. Sometimes trimming a tree back or removing it all together is the solution. Other times the shade is so thick a solar electric system just wouldn’t make sense without taking down the whole forest.

What’s the benefit of solar and trimming or removing trees vs. the value of the tree — environmentally speaking?

  • Mature trees absorb a remarkable amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) with estimates ranging from 18 to 50 pounds per year. Trees also complement your overall energy considerations, including providing shade to keeps dwellings and structures cool.
  • A 5 KW solar electric system offsets over 5,700 pounds of CO2 a year.

5 KW of Solar =’s 100+ Trees

So, unless you’re cutting down more than 100 trees for your 5 KW solar-electric system you’re  doing the right thing for the environment.

The coordination and collaboration of solar electric and trees can be a win-win. By offsetting carbon by using solar, you complement the work done by the trees in close proximity. In the big picture of tapping into the suns energy for wise energy choices and the environment, it’s a smart move.
The benefits of solar are far reaching. Making sure the trees you have coexist with your system is just one area of adding solar to your life where your solar professionals will be enormously helpful. Site surveys will address this right away setting you up for best solar success.

RESOURCE: Tree Math: Solar Panels vs. Trees, What’s the Carbon Trade-off?

Shaun Franks