Soaring energy costs and the new “energy poverty”
The energy transition now underway from fossil fuels to clean, renewable sources like wind and solar has become more urgent than ever because of a new driver unrelated to climate change: unpredictable energy prices. Fossil fuels are no longer a reliable source of low-cost energy, because of geopolitical tensions that are not easily contained. Nearly half of Americans surveyed in a recent poll said they “worry a great deal” about energy costs, up from one third the year before. In Europe, one in five people said they are drawing from their savings to meet their energy bills. While the term “energy poverty” used to refer to people who lacked access to energy, it is now taking on a new meaning. Thanks to advances in technology, the generation cost of renewable energy has fallen by 70% since 2010. But these cost savings are sometimes difficult to immediately pass on to families and other end users and the technology itself, such as solar panels, is not easily accessible to individual homeowners.
An affordable solar power system for apartments
After listening to customer feedback, Enel X set out to remove the main barriers that were discouraging people from switching to solar power: price, lack of space, and bureaucratic permitting procedures. Enel X found an answer to all three with Enel X Sun Plug&Play, the first photovoltaic solution of the category that can be installed on the balcony or below a window of a house or a city apartment, without bureaucratic complications. It is easy to install, and allows the user to immediately start self-producing their own energy, saving money on bills and reducing CO₂ emissions. This affordable solar solution can generate almost 400 kWh, enough power to run a refrigerator, television, or air conditioner. It plugs into a standard,dedicated wall socket connected to a home’s electrical circuit, protected by its own circuit breaker to avoid any eventual interference with the normal functioning of a home’s electrical system.
Save 20% on electric bills with a sustainable solution
Enel X Sun Plug&Play is a concrete, accessible solution that allows users to save 20% on their energy bills. At the same time, installing home solar power contributes to improving air quality, making cities more livable by reducing the carbon emissions from fossil fuel pollution. Each home that uses a Enel X Sun Plug&Play panel can cut its CO₂ emissions by 145 kg each year, the equivalent of what would be absorbed by almost 8 trees.
Enel X teams up with Legambiente
In order to give as many people as possible the access to sustainable energy and its benefits, Enel X teamed up with Italian non profit environmental group Legambiente for a project called #UnPannelloInPiù (#OneMorePanel) that uses crowdfunding to collect donations to install solar panels in the homes of low-income families in Italy. Giving families the tools to self-produce energy from renewable sources is a structural welfare solution, capable of delivering lasting economic, social and environmental benefits. Enel X Sun Plug&Play can save these families about €150 each year for the next 20 years. Enel X kickstarted the campaign with a donation of 50 panels, and the total panels donated in the first three months as of September 2022 had reached over 200.
A path towards sustainability and energy affordability
Households will play a strong role in the energy transition. Enel X is a partner to accompany people and communities on their energy transition and towards energy affordability through its ecosystem of innovative solutions for smart homes. Electrification – or using electricity as a source to provide a service previously met by other energy sources – is increasingly a way of making one’s home more comfortable, sustainable and smart. With a small investment, you can help pollute less and, at the same time, save on your utility bill. A concrete example of how the revolution can start with each of us, when each home contributes to reducing emissions a bit each year. Enel X Sun Plug & Play is a product that makes energy transition into an opportunity to achieve savings on domestic energy consumption through affordable solutions for energy self-production.