Google teams up with SolarCity to create $280-mn fund for residential solar projects

Internet giant Google and US solar power major SolarCity today announced the creation of a $280-million fund for financing residential solar power projects.

The Google-backed fund is SolarCity's largest project financing fund and the largest residential solar fund created in the US, the companies said in a joint statement.

SolarCity has now created 15 project funds with seven different partners to finance $1.28 billion in solar projects.

The deal marks Google's first investment in residential and distributed solar projects. It is also Google's largest clean energy investment so far, bringing its total investment in the sector to more than $680 million.

SolarCity plans to use the Google fund to help finance rooftop installations, through lease and power purchase agreement options to customers who desire to have solar panels installed at their homes, but do not wish to make the larger upfront investment to purchase the systems.

"As American consumers better understand the consequences of their energy choices, demand for affordable clean power is increasing," said Benjamin Cook, vice president of project finance at SolarCity. "This collaboration with Google will enable us to provide solar power to thousands of homeowners at or below the cost they currently pay for electricity."