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Solar news: First Tesla solar roofs installed, JPMorgan Chase makes commitment to renewables and sol

Tesla’s first solar roof installations, JPMorgan Chase’s entry into the growing community of major companies pledging to 100% renewables, and IKEA’s foray into solar panel and home battery storage installations are the headlines from this week’s Solar News Report.

Tesla’s solar roof sees first installations

We’re still a long way from the Tesla solar roof becoming available for anyone to purchase, but important steps were taken recently, with the installation of two units on the homes of Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Tesla CTO JB Straubel. Both men have working models of the solar roof installed. “This is version one,” Musk said of his solar roof, indicating that there’s still a lot of work to do on the product before the anticipated end-of-year production starts in Buffalo, NY.

There’s still a lot of mystery surrounding the Solar Roof, but these installations are a promising step forward. Tesla is expected to focus much of its time and effort this year on a successful launch of the Model 3 electric vehicle, and the construction of the Gigafactory in Nevada.

JPMorgan Chase sets 100% renewable goal, plans for solar installations

A growing number of high-profile companies are making a 100% renewable energy pledge (Walmart and Burberry as a few recent additions), and this week, JPMorgan Chase added their name to the list. The numbers are ambitious: the firm is planning to get 100% of their energy needs worldwide from renewable-only sources, including many on-site solar projects.

The company plans on implementing on-site solar power generation for as many as 1,400 retail and commercial buildings worldwide, including a project at the firm’s largest single-tenant office in Columbus, Ohio. Additionally, JPMorgan Chase says they will use their global reach and expertise in renewable power to support energy projects (wind and solar, notably) on the grid from which they will purchase power.

IKEA starts selling solar panels and batteries in the U.K.

In a move away from the typical DIY furniture solutions IKEA is known for, the company has begun selling solar panels and home storage batteries provided by Solarcentury. Their panels include a 25 year guarantee in addition to a six-year warranty on the installation and every part of the hardware. If you only want battery storage, Ikea offers their batteries as standalone purchases to be added on to existing home solar projects.

If the model is successful, look for IKEA to expand solar sales, potentially to the U.S., where they will be in direct competition with companies like Tesla. Like their traditional products, IKEA says they want to keep the solar process uncomplicated, which lines up with the general mission of the company. Solar may not be quite DIY yet, but Ikea’s move into the solar market can help expand solar adoption worldwide.

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