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Solar Celebration Day, 4/27. Tour and Presentation!Print

clean energy | April 19, 2019 | By Jeff Smith

Solar Celebration Day, 4/27. Tour and Presentation!

If you’ve been curious about clean energy possibilities for your home or business or are wondering about the viability of a 100% clean energy Leelanau County, you will not want to miss the FREE Solar Celebration day tour and presentation, Saturday, April 27.
 
Organizers with the nonprofit Northport Energy have split the day into two components. The morning (10am till noon) is dedicated to a self-guided tour of seven sites (five residences and two businesses) that have installed solar panels. The sites are clustered near Glen Lake to keep driving minimal. Owners and solar professionals will discuss their personal experiences and give a real-world depiction of the pros and cons of installing solar.
 
Solar Celebration’s second phase happens 1pm till 3pm at Glen Lake School, where the audience will watch the Sierra Club documentary film Reinventing Power, meet the Glen Lake Envirothon team that led the school’s solar energy project, and then hear thoughts about Leelanau’s clean-energy path forward from Groundwork’s Clean Energy Program Director Dan Worth.

Hear Groundwork Clean Energy Program Director Dan Worth discuss the future of renewable energy in Leelanau and beyond at Glen Lake School on Solar Celebration day, April 27.

Dan has been instrumental in moving renewable energy ahead throughout our region and has been integral to Groundwork’s clean energy initiatives and partnerships. He’s the chief program architect of Groundwork’s Michigan Clean Energy Conference (May 21–23, 2019), helped Glen Lake’s Envirothon team meet its fundraising goal, worked with Northport Energy in shaping the 100% Leelanau goals and has perspective from working with Traverse City, Petoskey and Frankfort on 100% clean energy goals. Dan is a renewable-energy realist, optimist and strategist, and just plain knows his stuff, so we encourage you to hear him out!
 
There’s no need to sign up. Just download the self-guided tour map and plan your day! Details and map at the Northport Energy website.

DID YOU MISS THIS? Roger Newton, Groundwork Board Chair and biotech entrepreneur, discusses why Groundwork's entrepreneurial nonprofit culture is effective and resonated with him.

 

Fact Sheet

Stoked About Solar!

Northport Energy put together the inspiring fact sheet below. Solar’s time is now.
 
Solar is the cheapest and most abundant energy source in the world
In December 2016, the cost of building and installing new solar electricity generation dropped to $1.65 per watt, narrowly beating out its renewable counterpart wind ($1.66/Watt) and all its fossil fuel competitors.

Solar is an economic engine
Over 242,000 Americans work in solar - more than double the number in 2012 - at more than 10,000 companies in every U.S. state. In 2018, the solar industry generated a $17 billion investment in the American economy.

The world gets it
Global solar power capacity grew 100x between 2002 and 2015.

The US gets it
99% of new electricity generation capacity added in the US in Q1 2016 came
from renewable energy sources, 64% from solar. US solar energy
industry added more jobs in 2015 than all the jobs added by the US oil, gas
extraction and pipeline industries combined.

Over a million solar systems have been installed in the U.S. alone
In early 2016, the millionth solar system was installed in the U.S., notching a milestone that took 40 years for the photovoltaic industry to reach. However, the more notable story that came with this achievement is the forecasted timeline for the next million installations, which is expected to happen in the next two years.

The breakeven point with solar continues to shorten
The cost of solar has plummeted while the cost of grid electricity has continued to gradually rise, and the “break-even point” with solar has become more and more attractive.

Solar is available even if your property is not solar friendly
More and more utilities across the county are offering “community solar” projects where you can purchase solar power in a community owned central array where your portion of production is applied to your electricity bill.

Solar is one of the cleanest, most sustainable energy sources
Coal plants are the largest producers of carbon emissions, which contribute to global warming. Oil hurts the planet too. Each year in America alone, over one million gallons of petroleum spill into waterways, oceans, and groundwater. That’s why solar power is so important—it can reduce pollution and harm to the environment. A household rooftop solar panel system can reduce pollution by 100 tons of CO2 carbon dioxide in its lifetime—and yes, this includes the energy it took to manufacture the solar panels. Solar panels can improve future air quality for humans as well as the millions of birds, fish, and mammals that are negatively affected by pollution each year.

Solar works in Michigan
While Arizona and California are the sunniest states in America (no wonder they’re also leading producers and consumers of solar energy) every square meter of our planet receives around 1,366 watts of direct solar radiation. With over 100 companies installing solar in our state, thousands of home and business
owners can testify that solar works here too. By the end of 2018 Michigan had over 150 MW (thats Million watts) of solar installed, enough to power over 150,000 homes.