Sunday, September 21, 2008

Solar Pioneer Uses His Noodle to Reduce His Heating Bill

This is a great article on what a little hard work and ingenuity can do to reduce some heating bills. A gentleman in Michigan was frustrated at his rising heating bills back in the early 80's and as the article says:

"After taking a solar energy class at a community college, he cobbled together a concept and some wholesale equipment to create a large solar collector on the south side of his Lewis Avenue home."

He built a solar collector from scratch after having taken one class! He said that his house can reach 80 degrees Fahrenheit in the dead of a freezing Michigan winter and that his monthly heating bill rarely exceeds 40 bucks. Imagine the possibilities and the ideas that will come about if we could retrain some of the U.S. workforce for clean tech jobs. How long do we need to remain at the mercy of rising natural gas bills?

2 comments:

dh said...

Dead of freezing Michigan winter! A sample image: http://michigansweetspot.com/2008/03/01/solitude-along-the-winter-lakeshore/.

Take that, ye fools who use "the sun doesn't always shine" as an excuse not to go solar.

justin rickard said...

Ha. Nice pic. That one surely makes me want to move back to the Midwest.

Wishful Thinking

*Before adding PV, wind, or solar thermal to your residential or commercial structure, the first step is to analyze this structure's energy consumption through a professional energy audit. I'd like to see some public education on the importance of an energy audit for any structure. Remember Smokey the Bear's forest fire shtick drilled into our heads over the last few decades? How about something like, "Henry the House" desperately wanting to know how much energy he consumes and wastes throughout the day?

*With over 300 sunny days a year on the Front Range is it too much to ask for solar PV and thermal modules on every residential and commercial unit (after an energy audit of course)?


*How about affordable plug-in electric cars that go more than 100 miles on a charge with PV and wind powered recharging stations?

*Dreaming of companies large and small adopting business sustainability practices to maximize profits, reduce their carbon footprint, and enhance the lives of their employees and the communities that surround them.

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