SolarWorld, a German company with a plant in Camarillo, unveiled a program Sept. 30 that could put solar panels on schools without charging the schools for any of the up-front costs.
The move comes a few weeks after the Oxnard Union School District passed over SolarWorld and picked SunPower, a San Jose-based company, to put solar installations on six high schools campuses.
SolarWorld said it will offer its new program in conjunction with RSB Funds, a renewable energy financing company that focuses on schools and other not-for-profit entities. RSB Funds will cover costs of the panels and installation and will then sell the power back to the schools, at rates lower than typical electric utility bills, SolarWorld said.
That arrangement, known as a power purchase agreement, has become the standard way for many businesses, schools, government agencies and other institutions to acquire solar panels.