Some 150 million kilometers away, there’s a huge nuclear fusion reactor that, without it, we’d be stranded in the dark and freezing cold if we stayed on the surface of Earth!
As the Sun grinds out energy in this way, it emits solar radiation in the form of light which takes about 8 minutes to reach us and helps illuminate the vast expanse of Earth’s landscape.
Not only that but humans have developed a way to harness that sunlight and convert it into energy via solar cells, which can be used to power communities.
In fact, according to the US Department of Energy, in a 90 minute period, there’s enough sunlight that hits Earth to cover the whole world’s energy supply in a year!
90 minutes… to handle the world’s energy supply for a year. Sounds like a good deal to me!
An even better deal is if you can earn Bitcoin from this… and you can with a company called Sun Exchange.
What Is Sun Exchange?
Sun Exchange is a South African based company that was founded in 2015 by CEO Abe Cambridge who is on a mission to change the energy we use away from fossil fuels and towards cleaner and more renewable solar energy.
Having originally lived in the cloudy overheads of the UK, he decided to set up shop in sunny South Africa after discovering there were multiple financial challenges with the solar industry in the country that could be overcome.
His solution, which is the basis of Sun Exchange, was to create a peer-to-peer solar cell leasing business where various projects can be crowdfunded by investors who can often get close to double digit returns on their investments.
How Does Sun Exchange Work?
To get things started, Sun Exchange will research and reach out to various schools, businesses and organisations that have shown a strong interest in transitioning to solar power.
After initial planning work has been done with various entities such as construction partners, proposals are then put forward that are economic and technically viable, as well as being socially and environmentally beneficial.
Once the client has accepted the proposal, the project is then launched on the Sun Exchange platform where customers can buy solar cells via a crowdfund.
Customers will need to register an account and go through the usual KYC checks beforehand.
After the crowdfund has finished, these solar cells are then installed and leased out to the project owners who will pay the rental to the crowdfunders for the duration of the project (which can be up to 20 years, depending on the project).
Making An Impact
Although stacking sats passively with the rental income is more than enough for some, the beauty of the way Sun Exchange is set up is that you are making a real impact.
The solar cells will be generating clean energy, which should please those in the energy FUD camp, and you’ll be making a big difference to local schools, businesses and communities. So there’s the social impact as well.
In fact, by purchasing the solar cells you can use this to reduce your own carbon footprint without the hassle of setting up your own solar cells, which can be cumbersome and hit or miss, especially in the UK!
What If Sun Exchange Goes Under?
According to the website, the “deed of title” of your solar cells that you have bought will be transferred in to Sun Exchange’s Bewind trust, which is governed by Trustees.
This is set-up so that rental income comes in and gets distributed to those that are leasing out the cells more efficiently and provides a safeguard to the solar cell assets that you have bought.
What Return On Investment Do I Get?
This depends on the project that you want to buy solar cells for and is specified at the time you go to buy the cells. The majority that I’ve seen so far range between 9-12% but one thing is for sure, the cells generally get sold out quickly so you don’t get much time to buy them!
How Often Does Payout Occur?
All being well, you should receive a payout at the beginning of each month in the currency that you selected when signing up – obviously, if you want to earn Bitcoin, select that option!
The sats will appear in your Sun Exchange dashboard, which you can then withdraw to a Bitcoin address like a cold wallet or to Luno either instantly or with the next round of withdrawals, which is usually Wednesday. Alternatively, you can keep the earnings in the dashboard and use it to buy more solar cells!
The amount you earn all depends on how much electricity your solar cells have generated for a project for a specific period.
Can I Buy Solar Cells For Different Projects?
You certainly can and in my opinion, which is not financial advice, it’s worth buying cells in different projects to build up an army of cells to support various community projects and it also mitigates your risk so you’re not putting all your eggs in one basket in case of an issue with a project.
Bear in mind, you won’t be earning that much in the first project unless you have spent thousands of dollars on solar cells so by slowly building up your sun loving army, you can start to reap the rewards later on when they all get going!
Earning With A Purposeful Twist
What I like about Sun Exchange is how it’s not just about earning sats. Sure, the allure of earning Bitcoin passively is a great pull but when you factor in the additional components, suddenly, it becomes a lot more than that.
The way you’re earning those sats makes a difference to people by providing clean energy to local communities, schools and projects that are not in “well-off” areas.
With the energy FUD that’s constantly surrounding Bitcoin, you can reduce your carbon footprint by buying solar cells which then allow you to earn Bitcoin in the process. So it seems counteractive to the FUDsters arguments but then again, I doubt we’ll hear the end of their nonsense!
Anyway, Sun Exchange may not be the fastest way to get sats, buying Bitcoin directly is a lot faster, but from what I’ve experienced so far, it’s one of, if not, THE most impactful way you can earn.
Now if they can just create a Rain Exchange for the UK weather, we’d be laughing!