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Renewable Energy: Solar, Wind, and Dog Power

Solar Wind Dog

Solar powered panels are the future addition to LEV's and Betterbikes. They will allow greater range before charging, maybe even eliminate charging on some days. With the advent of inexpensive thin film solar PV coming in the near future, this is a very exciting possibility. But not to be outdone, lets not forget older renew-ables already in use such as wind power and man's best friend. Wind power allowed ships to find the new world, and we all know that dog sled teams can be fast and long range. These can also be harnessed for bike, trike and scooter power!

We are now entering the age of truly renewable energy. Solar is considered by many to be the next oil. While contemplating mobile solar application, strongly consider installing Solar PV and/or passive for all your household energy AND transportation energy needs (electric cars and bikes).

The economics for going solar are a no brain-er and solar panels now last up to 40 years. Take the solar panel installation at the Belmont Betterbike factory as an example. Conservative estimates of cost savings will be at least $100,000 for the 7KW system over 30 years. Furthermore, PG&E has special usage rates you can use with solar like TOU-7 and more recently TOU-6. Going off grid is possible, but works out best to stay on grid and think of your power company as one big battery backup. You can even convert your existing gas appliances (heating and water heating) to electric for even more energy savings. Don't ignore benefits of installing an inexpensive passive solar system as well.

There are also immediate economic benefits to solar installation. Turns out the increase in equity for the Belmont property is more than what was paid for the solar system. It is estimated that $8000 in equity was gained instantly upon installation. How is this possible? In California there are great rebate incentive for adding solar PV. For our 7KW system this rebate is over $16,000. In the future, as the benefits of solar become more obvious to the general public, homes and businesses with solar with solar systems will see a further increase in equity values.

Think of buying solar as an insurance policy against high energy rates in the future. The price of the installation locks in the rate you will pay for household and transportation energy needs for the future.

Picture of the Solar Panels on the Betterbike factory will be added shortly. Here is the solar installer we used: http://eesolar.com

Live in a townhouse or condo and want to add solar? If your are in California this is no problem. Solar Rights act makes any law or by-law restricting solar null and void.