Zero Carbon CEO Panel – Michael Shore

A Zero Carbon CEO Panel provided best practices and lessons learned from the burgeoning cleantech sector.  Here are some highlights from each of the four speakers:

Michael Shore, of FLS Energy, installs solar hot water infrastructure for hotels, camps and other facilities and businesses that use large amounts of water.  He said solar is in high demand.

“Never do we have somebody that we’re talking to that doesn’t want solar,” he said. “Everybody wants it.”

But Shore, whose business is based in Western North Carolina, said there are several barriers to solar energy implementation.  From the client side, he said there are large upfront expenses, plus potential customers are wary of the risk of new technology.  From the business side, he said there are sometimes difficulties obtaining capital.

Shore said FLS Energy has a simple “solar energy purchase agreement” model, in which an FLS client only pays for the BTUs that they produce with the solar technology on their sites.  Solar technology produce a high-cost savings compared to natural gas, electric and other traditional energy sources, he said.

In terms of lessons learned from his endeavors, Shore said it is important to be “discriminating” and truly target potential customers that are the largest water users.