Grow Solar Returns for Sixth Year to the Metro East Region Due to Demand

Article by: The Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA): or Nate Keener: (618) 468-2782,

Grow NativeGodfrey, IL (April 5, 2021) — The past year has been a year of differences and change for all. For some Metro East residents, those changes have also included how they power their homes.

Thanks to the local group-buy and solar education program, Grow Solar Metro East, people across the region are going solar. Grow Solar Metro East helps make navigating the solar industry easier and more affordable for individuals with its group-buy discount and Power Hour education program.

While there are many reasons why residents are choosing to go solar these days, the environmental and financial impacts have never made a better case.

Several volunteers who help promote the Grow Solar Metro East program are also proud solar power installation owners.

Chris Krusa, Glen Carbon, is one of those. “I added 17 more panels via the Solarize program in late 2018, to the 12 that were installed previously, and am very pleased with the cost benefit,” he said. “We are pleased to share our experience.” 

“Financing solar has become much more prevalent,” said Peter Murphy, solar program director for the Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA). “In the Metro East, residents who finance solar are usually able to maintain their monthly budget, spending around what they previously paid in energy bills on solar systems for their homes.”

After their solar system is paid for, the energy is free for the remainder of a typical system’s lifetime of 25 years or longer.

The Metro East and its sister program, Grow Solar St. Louis, offer free no-pressure/no-obligation educational sessions and volume pricing for solar. These programs bring residents and small business owners around the Metro East region together from the comfort of their own homes, lowering the price of solar while simultaneously increasing the deployment of clean energy.

The Grow Solar Metro East team is grateful for the continuous support from local municipalities, partners, organizations and community members and owes its success to their contributions.

“Madison County Planning and Development has been a proud partner and supporter of Grow Solar Metro East since the program started here in 2017,” said Andi Yancey with Madison County Resource Management. “MREA, along with dedicated local partners, continue their outstanding work educating local property owners on the solar market and installation process. We look forward to continuing to support their efforts to reduce barriers and increase access to solar energy in our region!” 

“Modeling sustainability for the community and educating the public are two important aspects of our college mission, and Grow Solar Metro East helps to advance both,” said Nate Keener, Director of Sustainability at Lewis and Clark Community College. “We’re looking forward to another strong year partnering with the Grow Solar program.”

These dual programs have resulted in over 350 installations on homes and businesses in the Gateway region since 2016. Over 2,000 residents have attended educational presentations, and over 2,000 kW of solar have been installed as a result of these programs in the Metro East region alone.

With a goal of adding over 650 kW of solar – ­enough for about 65 properties – the 2021 program launches with a free webinar at 4 p.m. on Monday, April 12. Register at

More information and the complete calendar of presentations can be found at