MBL Energy and NantEnergy install 1.55 MW of solar+storage at California car dealerships

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MBL Energy and NantEnergy are installing solar-plus-storage systems at eight Hansel Auto Group locations in Sonoma County, California.

These systems were engineered and installed by San Jose-based MBL Energy and feature a total of 1.555 MW of solar PV integrated with 567 kWh of NantEnergy’s behind-the-meter SmartStorage systems. The solar-plus-storage systems are estimated to save the auto group up to $14.3 million over the next 25 years and help it to diversify its energy supply as it prepares for the expected growth of the electric vehicle (EV) market.

Hansel is the first auto dealer group in California to install solar with energy storage technology.

“Automakers the world over have made significant investments in EVs, with attractive EV options in new vehicle segments being rolled out every year,” said Henry Hansel, president, Hansel Auto Group. “At Hansel, we are committed to a sustainable future from the cars we sell to how we operate our dealerships. MBL Energy and NantEnergy share this commitment to renewable energy and together provide the ideal solar and battery storage technologies to take our auto group through the next quarter-century and beyond.”

With 46.8% of the nation’s EV sales in 2018, California leads the nation in EV adoption, according to data from the Auto Alliance and IHS Markit. EV sales in Q1 2019 surpassed the previous year’s by 13%, according to nonprofit research firm Veloz.

“California’s auto industry has recognized the outsized impact it can have on the environment and our quality of life with the transition to cleaner electric vehicles and supporting them with renewable sources of power,” said Patrick Soon-Shiong, chairman, NantEnergy. “We are proud to partner with MBL Energy to bring solar and energy storage solutions to Hansel Auto Group to help them meet the demand from California’s consumers and state regulators for cleaner transportation options and energy sustainability.”

NantEnergy’s United States C&I customers reduced their energy demand usage in 2018 by an average of 25% with the company’s solar-plus-storage system. Last year NantEnergy dispatched 6.3 GWh of electricity via a global fleet of energy storage systems.

“While C&I solar installations can go a long way in reducing energy charges, it also offsets the burning of millions of pounds of fossil fuels for energy every year. Pairing solar with energy storage systems takes those savings to the next level by lowering demand charges, one of the fastest-growing parts of utility bills for commercial facilities,” said Robert Laubach, CEO of MBL Energy. “Additionally, the savings that customers realize on their utility bills can be used to grow their business.”

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