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ASES Solar Tour

  • 1.  ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-05-2021 08:40 AM
    I was just wondering how the participants felt regarding their quantitative turnout for the solar tours? In terms of previous years, Up, Down, the same? Other observations....

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    william fitch
    Owner
    www.WeAreSolar.com
    fcfcfc@ptd.net
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  • 2.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    ASES Committee Member
    Posted 10-05-2021 08:43 AM
    Great question, William! I am also interested to hear from hosts about their attendance to their site/tour. 

    Carly Cipolla (she/her)
    Director of Engagement
    American Solar Energy Society 
    2525 Arapahoe Ave, Ste E4-253
    Boulder, CO 80302 






  • 3.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-06-2021 09:13 AM
    My site was open just on Saturday from 10-3.  I had 5 visitors, and we had sunny weather this year for a change.  In two previous years (pre-Covid) I've had up to 25, but that was because a local tour organizer set up a bus tour to bring participants to various sites including mine.  Prior to the bus tours I usually had less than 10 per year.

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    Mike Curran
    Retired from (dare I say it?) Fossil Plant Mgt.
    joacchim57@gmail.com
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    ASES Committee Member
    Posted 10-06-2021 09:20 AM
    Thank you for the update, Mike! Glad you had visitors and we'll look to increase this for future tours.

    Carly Cipolla (she/her)
    Director of Engagement
    American Solar Energy Society 
    2525 Arapahoe Ave, Ste E4-253
    Boulder, CO 80302 







  • 5.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-07-2021 11:13 AM
    Meridian Township in Michigan had a virtual tour (11 videos) and self-guided tour this year.  We had a table at our farmers market on Saturday and talked to about 40 people about solar and the tour.  The township has a 4 kW system there which is nice to show off.  





  • 6.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-06-2021 09:45 AM
    The DFW Solar Tour participation was down dramatically.  The tour was virtual again this year because of a COVID resurgence.  I'm unsure how participation would have been if the tour had been in-person.

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    Mark Witte
    Consultant
    Mark H. Witte Consulting, LLC
    witte.m@att.net
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  • 7.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-06-2021 09:55 AM
    Now that people are commenting, I will speak of my location. For the first time I had zero. I can not say I am totally surprised. This event in my area always coincides with the Bloomsburg fair which draws close to a Million people over the week, though down this year. Last year it was canceled. This usual fair opposition combined with Covid-19, greater political polarization along with the very red area I live in pretty much set the stage. RE is associated with Democrats and independents of course. Also from a "standing back" perspective, RE and especially PV and EV's no long have the "oh what's that cool thing" identity going for it. Everybody knows. Those that choose to do it, do. Those that don't, don't. Now its just about the economics.

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    william fitch
    Owner
    www.WeAreSolar.com
    fcfcfc@ptd.net
    ------------------------------



  • 8.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-06-2021 10:49 AM
    William,

    Sorry about the total lack of participation in your tour. Competing against a large fair for years must be frustrating.  I think you're correct about the long-term decline in solar tour participation. The good news is continual cost declines in solar electricity increasingly make it economically viable relative to electricity generated from other sources.   

    Your comment about RE being associated with Democrats and independents has always baffled me. Conservatives are big proponents of personal freedom and independence. What provides more personal freedom and independence than generating ones own electricity? With battery backup, a grid connection is really only insurance in case of a RE system failure.

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    Mark Witte
    Consultant
    Mark H. Witte Consulting, LLC
    witte.m@att.net
    ------------------------------



  • 9.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-06-2021 11:27 AM
    Edited by william fitch 10-06-2021 11:29 AM
    If one has clear vision, I totally agree, personal freedom... especially EV and solar PV.... energize at home.. no trip required... it doesn't get better, etc.. However, the fly in the ointment is that business will always choose recurring income over one shot revenues. More profit. And the Repubs are openly business profit first above ALL ELSE. RE is free. Period.  The demand destruction to all the recurring business models of the entrenched FFI constructs is equal to DEATH, financially. And for all practicality, when all the wealth is connected up and downstream to them, it might as well be infinite.

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    william fitch
    Owner
    www.WeAreSolar.com
    fcfcfc@ptd.net
    ------------------------------



  • 10.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-07-2021 10:26 AM
    William: I'm a builder of NZR homes in New Hampshire (we no longer have tours) and I wanted to comment on Republicans not being interested.  Most of my clients have not been on the Right, but I've built for a couple of people who specifically wanted to lower their cost of living (in at least one case without solar panels) and one very right-wing coupe whose ultimate goal was to be off grid and disconnected from everyone else.  So they are out there, and buying! (although not in very high numbers)


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    Robert Irving
    Builder/Architect
    rhirving@tds.net
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  • 11.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-07-2021 10:38 AM
    Ah.. NH... that's my old "grow-up" location. I took my family up to Mt. Washington for the first time pre-Covid. They absolutely loved it along with Quechee Gorge. We stopped at the Dunkin Donets there and got two cups that said, "Quechee runs on Dunkin"...LOL...

    yes they are there... as the standard distribution curve suggests... its just they are more in the 3rd deviation than the middle...


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    william fitch
    Owner
    www.WeAreSolar.com
    fcfcfc@ptd.net
    ------------------------------



  • 12.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    ASES Committee Member
    Posted 10-06-2021 11:07 AM

    Hi William,

    I am sorry to hear that there was no participation at your site. I think overall with COVID, Tour participation has been down. Can I ask how you promoted your event? 

    If the fair lines up with your event again next year, maybe put up flyers in that area to help attract more attendees. 

    Thank you for participating in the National Solar Tour. 



    ------------------------------
    Narelle Kipple
    Membership & Programs Coordinator
    American Solar Energy Society
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  • 13.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-07-2021 09:51 AM

    This was our first year having our place on the National Solar Tour. We were only open on Saturday from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM but we had a total of 6 people. One visitor mentioned that he will likely be building an off grid system due to the fact that the local utility wants over $25,000.00 To extend power onto his property. 

    Another visitor mentioned he and his family will likely be adding solar very soon. 

    Just for the record my brother and I would both probably be considered to be rather conservative in the way we live our lives however we both have solar PV systems and understand the value it offers. Solar should not be a red or blue issue. 

    One concern I do have is how to dispose of a faulty solar module? As it stands right now I have not been able to find any place that will take it as a recyclable item. 



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    Robert Mellon
    nmellon@verizon.net
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  • 14.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-07-2021 10:26 AM
    On the politics, I couldn't agree more.... but its been made that like a whole host of "other things".
    Getting rid of a panel. Good question. I have a shattered SunPower 327 E20 in my barn that still works.
    I was thinking on giving to a tech school or something, as an example of how the glass breaks,
    yet the panel still works to near capacity.

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    william fitch
    Owner
    www.WeAreSolar.com
    fcfcfc@ptd.net
    ------------------------------



  • 15.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-07-2021 01:04 PM
    Edited by Mike Curran 10-07-2021 01:05 PM
    @Robert Mellon:  I have the same question.

    This past spring the county where I live had an electronic devices recycling event.  I called in advance to see if they would take a panel that I had received with shattered glass, and they said yes.  I expected there would be careful sorting of the items being collected, but instead everything was being dumped into a large rolloff dumpster, including my PV panel. Now, maybe someone at the other end of this process was going to sort through all this stuff, but I have my doubts.  I don't think recycling these on a small scale is happening yet, unfortunately.

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    Mike Curran
    Retired from (dare I say it?) Fossil Plant Mgt.
    joacchim57@gmail.com
    ------------------------------



  • 16.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    ASES Award Winner
    Posted 10-08-2021 09:19 AM
    I had 116 tour on Sunday, October 3rd here in Arlington, VA which is
    about half as usual.

    I sent in an idea for ASES and it's Chapters to focus on sectional
    media outlets for:

    1. engineers., architects, home builders

    2. teachers, professors, students

    3. local government planners, environment & energy staffers

    4.and also focus on decisions & options for a homeowner & 
         small business

    Maybe a more targeted constituency approach, would beef 
        up our numbers next year !

    Very best, Scott

    _____________________
     
    Scott Sklar
    President
    The Stella Group, Ltd.
    706 North Ivy Street, Arlington, VA 22201
    VA Phone:  703-522-1195 (3049 direct)
    E-mail:   solarsklar@aol.com
     
    The Stella Group, Ltd.. is a strategic technology optimization owner's rep firm for 
    clean energy users and companies, with a focus on system standardization, 
    modularity and web-enabled diagnostics.  Scott Sklar is an Adjunct Professor at 
    The George Washington University teaching three unique interdisciplinary 
    sustainable energy courses, and an Affiliated Professor with CATIE, an 
    international graduate university in Costa Rica offering graduate degrees
    on sustainability. Sklar is the Sustainable Energy Director at GWU's Environment 
    and Energy Management Institute (EEMI).





  • 17.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-11-2021 10:55 AM
    I wasn't able to go on a tour this year---too busy with roof problems, under the solar panels. Even though I live close to a major road, near the DC Beltway, we have raccoon problems, like many other neighborhoods. The raccoons damaged my roof, leading to a water leak. Now the solar people are coming out to remove several panels (at $200 an hour) so the roofing people can repair my roof. The raccoons used my black walnut tree (whose nuts the squirrels bury everywhere) as the way to climb to my roof. 

    I was told by the solar people, yes, they do offer a "critter guard" at installation, at an extra charge, I assume.
    Please be warned, if raccoons are regular visitors in your neighborhood, to get a critter guard for your panels. I also need to get rid of my crape myrtle, which is getting too big and will shade my panels. I love trees, but they are a liability when you have a vegetable garden and solar panels

    Let the sun "pay" your electric bill. (No bill since May.) Keep winter cold, not summer (with cold A/C). Let's keep our four seasons. 
    Christine Feinthel






  • 18.  RE: ASES Solar Tour

    Posted 10-12-2021 10:35 AM
    Re critters under solar panels, I had to install hardware cloth around my array to prevent squirrels from getting underneath and chewing on wiring.  Haven't had any issues since installing the hardware cloth.

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    Glenn Bowman
    glennbowman@gmail.com
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