SunPort has developed three-prong adapters that easily enable any device to use solar energy without panels.
From NYC’s government funded solar taco trucks to solar farms that let renters buy panels to be used remotely, there is a welcome progression towards democratization in this industry of renewable energy. Joining this movement is SunPort, a three-prong plug that can be put between any device and its power outlet, which upgrades the energy consumed into solar credits.
SunPort claims that 90 percent of Americans say they want to use more solar energy, but its usage only makes up for less than 1 percent of total energy production in the US. Aiming to create more demand for this renewable source, the New Mexico-based company SunPort developed its SunPort plug — an outlet adapter that monitors the amount of energy used, and then automatically purchases solar microcredits through a nonprofit called reChoice.
These credits — Solar Renewable Energy Certificates — are used to represent that one megawatt-hour of electricity was generated by an renewable energy resource. Generally, they are only available in large quantities, but SunPort is enabling individual users to have access to them too. As a result, users can help support solar production by “upgrading” their form of energy consumption from coal, natural gas, nuclear or others, to solar.
The company wishes to eventually offer customers a plan to upgrade the entire home to solar rather than just one outlet. For the moment, they are crowdfunding on Kickstarter, where users can pre-order a SunPort adapter for USD 49, with a delivery in March 2016. How else can solar power be democratized?