Clear Skies Ahead: San Diego Yacht Club

Commercial Case Study



The San Diego Yacht Club took on an ambitious goal with its Zero-Net Emissions Master Plan, and installing an on-site solar system to consume self-generated renewable energy was a major component of the club’s strategy. With the ability to produce their own solar energy and the strategy to engage Green Tariff Electricity from the grid when necessary, the club and its Facilities Committee demonstrated its leadership as stewards of the air that powers many of the ships that sail from its dock. By combining renewable energy use with better energy management and improved efficiencies, the club’s board members had their path toward zeroing out its carbon footprint while at the same time dramatically reducing its energy costs.


HES Solar’s proposal was accepted and soon after 487 SunPower solar panels were erected on three separate rooftops; the seaward-facing array being constructed atop copper roofing. The 175 kW system contributes greatly to the San Diego Yacht Club’s Zero Net Energy (ZNE) goal of producing an equal or greater amount of energy annually than what it consumes annually.

Customer Benefit

In addition to drastically reducing emissions, the solar system significantly lowered the facility’s energy costs and insulated it from utility rate increases in the future. As the owner of the system the club also fully benefited from available incentives including the Federal Investment Tax Credit and the Accelerated Depreciation Tax Benefit. The club also places a high value on leading by example as well as influencing its members who have sway over other local interests; those decision-makers are sure to catch wind of what the San Diego Yacht Club has accomplished.

San Diego Commercial Rooftop Solar at San Diego Yacht Club

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Robert Laverty

Senior Energy Consultant, Residential

Robert Laverty joined the HES team in the summer of 2018, bringing his ten years of solar design experience and his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Puget Sound with him. Robert is dedicated to finding solutions to help families produce and store electricity in order to reduce their reliance on grid power as well as help reduce their household’s carbon footprint. Robert’s experience as a newspaper editor as well as his involvement with the sustainability-focused Rocky Mountain Institute drives him to constantly seek out innovative ways to meet energy needs through renewable resources as well as helps him share those ideas with Southern California homeowners. When not at work or volunteering time with his church or community, Robert spends time with his wife and two sons or pursues his passion of fly fishing.
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