Aug 2013. The US Department of Defense spends around $20,000,000,000 annually...on energy alone. This is a pretty shocking sum - $20 BILLION for the light bill. Ok, they power a few things besides lights, such as major radar installations and satellite infrastructure systems, not to mention accommodation and training facilities for some 1.4 million personnel. But still. $20 Billion. Their annual energy budget is bigger than any other organization - in the world.
So we're in the 21st century, and everyone is looking to alternative 'green' energy sources, where the top-dog is solar energy. And as with any technology, it needs to be purchased before you get the benefits.
This is where Mosaic gets involved. Their model is to raise crowd-funded investment money to buy solar power installations, then sell the generated power to the installation customer (for less than they pay their utility company). The money generated is used to repay the investors - each monthly payment includes a small portion of the principal, and some interest - currently in the 4% to 6% range, repayable over about 9 or 10 years. Neat idea.
Mosaic started with small, non-military installations, and now has several fully funded projects running, all repaying the investors on time each month with interest. Some are pretty big, including an apartment complex in Gainesville, Florida at 251 kW, and a 662 kW charter school in California. However, Mosaic have turned their eye to a huge 12.3 mega watt $35 million installation at Fort Dix, New Jersey.
This will involve the installation of more than 55,000 solar panels across 550 properties, mostly houses. The upside for the military is to inflation-proof themselves against ever-increasing utility costs, getting a lower electrical rate immediately and locking it there for 30 years or more.
Little can go wrong with a solar panel, and once installed it will typically keep producing electricity at high rates for over 3 decades, so solar investments with a return in the 8 to 10 year range are a reasonably safe bet. Probably not the highest return you could get on your money, but pretty solid.
The success of the Fort Dix project will catapult Mosaic into the big leagues, and set the stage for monumental growth. And based on their track record to date, the future looks rosy.