Tiffany Parker

How It Works – Step by Step Process

How It Works – Step by Step Process

Do you live in Albemarle, Charlottesville, Clarke, Culpeper, Fauquier, Greene, Loudoun, Madison, Orange or Rappahannock? If yes, Solarize Piedmont is the campaign for you. Here’s information on how to participate: 

1. Sign Up

Get started by filling out our online form to get a free assessment to determine if your home is a good candidate for solar. There is absolutely no commitment until, and if, you sign a contract with an installer.  

2. Receive a Satellite Assessment

After you fill out the form, staff from LEAP will perform a satellite assessment of your property (via Google Earth) to determine its suitability for a solar array. You will be contacted with the results within 3-5 days. Primarily, we’re looking for a good location for the solar panels. Most are installed on roofs, so a generally south-facing roof that isn’t shaded by adjacent trees is perfect. Ground-mounted systems are an option for fields or yards that get plenty of sun.

3. Send in a Copy of Your Electric Bill

If your property is a good candidate for solar, LEAP will ask you to share a copy of your prior year’s electric usage by email or text. Email a screenshot or pdf to This step helps the installer to determine the optimal size system for your home.

4. Schedule Visit with an Installer

Through a comprehensive and competitive bidding process, we selected two qualified local solar installers for the campaign. Once your electric bill is in hand, we’ll forward your contact information on to one of them. Within three to five days, that installer will contact you to schedule a free site visit to your home to create a proposal tailored for you, your budget, and your home’s energy needs. Sometimes a preliminary proposal is sent using software.

5. Get a Proposal

Photo by the Local Energy Alliance Program.

After a detailed review of your property and your goals, your contractor will provide a proposal for turnkey services including site visits, permits, materials, installation, and commissioning. Your solar installer can also talk you through financing scenarios.

6. Sign the Proposal

Decide whether the proposal, pricing and financing options are right for you. This may involve a back and forth with the installer to further tailor your options. If you aren’t able to move forward right away, at least you have a better idea of your options!

7. Installation

Two regional, qualified solar installers, Prospect Solar and SunDaySolar, have been selected for the 2019 Solarize Piedmont campaign. Your installer will obtain all necessary permits, order the materials and equipment, and manage the work.

8. Watch Your Meter Run Backward

Once your system is up and running, you use electricity as it is generated and sell back any surplus electricity to the utility. Through “net energy metering,” you get a one-to-one, kilowatt hour-for-kilowatt hour credit on your bill for every unit of electricity produced and put back on the electric grid.

Learn more at The electric utility will never pay you for the solar energy, they just credit your account. The credits are good for 12 months, so a sunny summer can be saving money for you in the winter.

If you live in Virginia, but do not live in PEC’s service territory, and would like to know if there are Solarize options near you, please fill out the interest form at

Current Online Campaigns

Current Online Campaigns


Support the Virginia Energy Reform Act

The Virginia Energy Reform Act would restructure our outdated energy market into one that provides energy choice, protects consumers, assists low-income communities, and holds utilities accountable for poor performance. It has been tabled until 2021, but it won’t hurt to contact your state legislators today!

Charlottesville/Albemarle Letter: Support the Jefferson Area Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan

Add your name or business/organization to our letter of support for the recently released Jefferson Area Bicycle & Pedestrian Plan. 

Sign the Virginia Energy Reform Coalition Petition

The Virginia Energy Reform Coalition (VERC) is a group of stakeholders, including PEC, representing a broad spectrum of interests who are calling for reforms needed to create a modern, 21st century grid that lowers prices, increases choices for ratepayers, and improves the environment, all while maintaining reliability. Learn more and sign the petition!

Town to Trail Petition

Add your name to our petition to show support for trails and parks in Gordonsville in Orange County. 

Loudoun Petition: HOA Residents for Sustainable Landscaping

More than 60% of Loudoun residents are part of an HOA. Join with friends, neighbors and community members in showing support for sustainable landscaping practices at HOAs across Loudoun County.

Charlottesville/Albemarle Petition

This petition is a simple way to show elected officials in Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville that residents want better, more connected, bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure.

Ways to Get Involved

The Piedmont Environmental Council (PEC) a 501(c)3 nonprofit, was founded in 1972 to promote and protect the Virginia Piedmont’s rural economy, natural resources, history and beauty. Headquartered in Warrenton, VA, we have offices throughout a nine-county Piedmont region that includes Albemarle & Charlottesville, Clarke, Culpeper, Fauquier, Greene, Loudoun, Madison, Orange and Rappahannock.

There are many ways to make a difference and many skill sets that are important for our work. Read the spring 2020 letter by PEC President Chris Miller on the subject of the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day and ways to take action. Or get more involved with PEC through one of the ways listed below!

Have a question? Please address general inquiries to



Sign Up For Email Alerts or News

Stay informed and make a difference on the issues that affect you the most.
Read More


Make a Donation

Join PEC, renew your membership, or make an additional donation to support PEC’s work in the Piedmont and throughout Virginia.
Read More


Take Action!

Find out if there are ongoing advocacy campaigns or petitions to sign.
Find Out More


Connect With PEC

From updates on important issues on Facebook and Twitter to photo sharing on Flickr, keep up with PEC through your favorite social networking site.
Read More


Become a Volunteer

Show your commitment to the Piedmont by becoming a PEC volunteer. There are many events throughout the year where volunteers are needed. Contact PEC today to see how you can help.
Fill out our Volunteer Form


Share Your Photos

PEC would be delighted and grateful to share your photographs or imagery with our audience. Images are needed for both print and electronic publications.
Find Out More


Our Annual Photo Contest

PEC has held an annual photo contest each year since 2010.
More About the Annual Photo Contest



West, Bri

West, Bri

Director of Outreach & Communications
Central Warrenton Office
(540) 347-2334 ext. 7020

Bri West

Bri West joined PEC’s staff in July 2006. Bri is a lifelong resident of Fauquier County, graduating from Fauquier High School in 2000. She went on to receive a degree in Biology from the College of William and Mary. After college Bri worked as a Naturalist at the Conservancy of Southwest Florida in Naples.

Since joining PEC Bri’s focus has been energy policy, community outreach and civic engagement. In 2006-2007 Bri worked almost exclusively on the Dominion/Allegheny transmission line campaign — helping to communicate with citizens across the Piedmont, and further afield, through email alerts and regular updates to the PEC website.

Since then, Bri has taken on an increasing role in the management of PEC’s online and written communications. In 2011, Bri became PEC’s Director of Outreach & Communication.

Wilmot, Dawn

Wilmot, Dawn

Executive Assistant
Central Warrenton Office
(540) 347-2334 ext. 7090

Dawn began working with the PEC January 2007 as the assistant to the President. Prior to employment with PEC, she worked with an international humanitarian relief organization that used aircraft to provide relief to suffering people around the world.

Dawn was born and raised in Southern California. As a military spouse, Dawn has lived in many different communities throughout California, Maryland and Virginia. In 1995, Dawn’s family decided to settle down and call Virginia home. In her spare time, Dawn enjoys spending time with her family, playing with her dogs, gardening and exercising. 

Randolph, Watsun

Randolph, Watsun

Senior GIS Analyst
Central Warrenton Office
(540) 347-2334 ext.7035

Watsun Randolph joined PEC full time in April 2005, after an extended internship. He is the backbone of PEC’s mapping program, and provides GIS services for nonprofits in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia. Watsun received his BS in geography from Ohio University in 2003. He has performed data collection and mapping for the Urban Biodiversity Information Node Pilot (UrBIN) of the National Biological Information Infrastructure. The paper, Urban Biodiversity in the Holmes Run/Cameron Run Watershed, Landscape Assessment & Biodiversity Planning Considerations, was published in March 2003.