Zero net Energy Buildings

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Often a homeowner walks into Energy Emporium who is just starting their plans for building a new house. They are doing their research and want to make sure they are siting the home for the best solar access. They are usually thinking about the energy efficiency and they hope to keep the operational costs of living in the home down as much as possible.

Solar Powered Bolt


Solar Powered Bolt

I have been anxiously awaiting the day when I could both afford and justify an all electric vehicle. So, I was very excited when our second household car came to the end of its life very soon after the Chevy Bolt had recently begun shipping. What timing!

First on the affordability – Tesla has been the only electric vehicle that had a decent size battery that you can use for more than just going to the local grocery store and back. But their cars have generally been upwards of $60,000 to purchase.

Solar Snow Anxiety

Snowed in solar

If you have a solar PV (electric) system and have just been through the deep freeze of many days back to back below 0F degrees — then you may be experiencing ‘solar snow anxiety’.

I define ‘solar snow anxiety’ as the unsettling concern that you need to remove the snow on your solar panels the minute the storm stops. The worry is that you will be missing some important kilowatt hours of energy once the sun comes back out.

Can I make a difference?

Government PolicyFor many years I was told that if I don’t like a bill or policy that is being discussed at the federal level or at the state level, that it is important for me to call or write my representatives to make my voice heard.

For the most part I have shied away this advice because I’m really not interested in politics. I don’t understand how the system works, I don’t like that money seems to be able to buy votes or sway politicians, and I don’t like all the money that goes into lobbyists and Political Action Committees.

Ready for 100% Clean Energy

Ready for 100Can we as individuals completely reduce our fossil fuel consumption to get to 100% clean energy? What would that look like? How about at the city, state or federal level?

I was skeptical but very hopeful when I attended a discussion on Sierra Club’s campaign called “Ready for 100“. The goal is to get to 100% renewable energy for ourselves, our towns and our country by 2050. I’m very hopeful because we have to get there to prevent very serious and irreversible damage to the planet, and I want to believe it can happen. At the same time I was very skeptical because I don’t think we have the political will especially at the local, state, and federal government.