Shining Story of Local Resilience, Excellence, and Success!
by Kira Judge
Hey, WHOLifE reader! I have an exciting shining success story to share! I am super pumped and inspired to be a brand new member of the SES Solar Co-op board of directors. This volunteer-based organization deserves a huge congratulations and thank you from all of us. So without further ado, congrats and thanks SES Solar Co-op! It is an amazing example of resilience and creativity for anyone who can relate to my love and appreciation of our shining province. Saskatchewan sees an average of 2,267 hours of bright sunshine every year.
Nobody can argue that 2020 is a year to remember! We have so many challenges, and yet so many of us have been able to enjoy a reset in our lives at the same time. I have re-connected to my personal passions to serve my local community. COVID-19 has taught us what is the heart of Saskatchewan’s prosperity–it is our own health, well-being of our loved ones, and health of our community. SES Solar Co-op is a shining example of courage, faith, and love in the community. I am humbled beyond words that I get to contribute to its next chapter of growth into quality and conscious community service and partnership.
I invite you to get to know us. SES Solar Co-op has played a significant role in the growing movement in Saskatchewan toward a renewable energy tipping point. As the first renewable energy co-operative in the province, we conduct stringent research on power production to ensure continued and improved quality and efficiency for our solar projects, and we make data-driven decisions on behalf of our members.
Solar technology is now rivalling its non-renewable counterparts. By harnessing the potential of solar, our projects create a sustainable energy source, offset greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel generated electricity, and provide a return on investment–all at the same time.
At this time, we are celebrating a truly visionary opportunity in Saskatchewan: CNH Industrial in Saskatoon has partnered with us for our largest installation to date. These are very exciting times for us! Our seventh and largest installation to date is up, running, and producing lots of solar energy! It is an ambitious project of 1,000 solar panels, the largest urban solar installation in Saskatchewan. The power it produces goes directly into the CNH Industrial plant on 71st Street, where it is used to produce farm equipment while reducing CNH Industrial’s carbon footprint by 289 tonnes a year. Check out CNH Industrial press release online at CJWW Radio and The Western Producer.
Over 400 preferred shares have been sold in the current share offering. The SES Solar Co-op has extended it until March 15, 2021, or until the total of 750 shares sell out. You could own one or more shares available for sale now. Due to the successful projects, the board is determining how members will receive dividends.
In addition, the shares are eligible as RRSPs as a new contribution, or a transfer from a self-directed RRSP that you currently own. In order to make it worthwhile, it is recommended that you purchase at least five shares if you choose to invest them as RRSPs.
If you want to be part of this positive shift, are a resident of Saskatchewan, and 18 or older, you can become a member of the SES Solar Co-op. You will be directly contributing to the expansion of renewable energy development in Saskatchewan while reducing Green House Gases (GHGs). By joining the SES Solar Co-op you will become a joint owner of all our projects. You will feel so good that you have an investment (little or big) in this shining local success. You can invite friends or family to co-own one share, or you can own multiple shares. My husband and I bought our first share a few years ago and it brings our family feelings of happiness and belonging. Just seeing the Two Twenty building on 20th St. W., the 100% solar powered cars at Radiance Cohousing, the Landfill Gas project, the Ness Creek site, Wolf Willow Co-Housing, and Haskamp Street project gives me an emotional ROI at being invested in the SES Solar success.
Here is how it started. The Saskatchewan Environmental Society (SES) is a founder of SES Solar Co-op, and is dedicated to ensuring that “all needs are met in sustainable ways.” The SES wanted to advance renewable energy in Saskatchewan by making it accessible to as many people as possible. It developed the idea of the SES Solar Co-operative Ltd., and in 2014 it entered a social enterprise, crowd-funding competition with Affinity Credit Union to further this endeavour. Public response to the solar power co-operative was enormous. The Affinity Credit Union competition raised over $100,000, including the $50,000 grand prize. With sustainability at the forefront, the project began to take flight.
Now the SES Solar Co-operative Ltd. (sessolarcoop.ca) is a consumer co-operative as determined by the Co-operatives Act of 1996, with its own legal framework and bylaws. A Board of Directors spearheads the co-operative. Members can purchase one common share and one or more preferred shares. Each member owns a portion of the entire operation, rather than one (or more) specific panel(s).
Join us in creating another successful renewable shift!
Kira Judge is a new board member of SES Solar Co-op in Saskatoon. For more information call (306) 518-7594, email firstname.lastname@example.org, and visit www.sessolarcoop.ca. Also see the display ad on page 23 of the 26.3 January/February issue of the WHOLifE Journal.