Solar Energy Q & A

Solar Energy Q & A

Question and Answer with a new residential rooftop Solar PV customer from Parkersburg, WV

Q: What got you interested in renewable energy?

A: My wife and I first became interested in energy issues in the mid-2000’s as petroleum was quadrupling in price during the decade. The 2008 oil price spike that at least partially caused the Great Recession convinced us that the best way to insulate (no pun intended!) our family from increasing energy costs was to reduce our energy footprint over time.

Q: What were your first energy-efficiency measures?

A: We initially started with installing energy-efficient lighting throughout the house. Then we replaced our central air conditioning system and other appliances as they wore-out with the most energy-efficient models available.

Q: Tell me about that Chevy Volt plugged into an outlet in the garage?

A: Replacing our old gas-guzzling vehicles with a plug-in hybrid Chevy Volt and a more fuel-efficient small SUV reduced our footprint further.  Our more fuel-efficient vehicles have reduced our total gasoline usage by 50%.

Q: What about solar energy specifically appealed to you?

A: As solar panel prices dropped significantly over the last couple of years, renewable energy has become more affordable and cost-competitive with fossil-fuel based energy.

Q: What are your goals regarding production and budget?

A: Stuff as many panels on the roof as possible! Cost has come down significantly, so it has become more affordable.   In total, we expect our household electricity bill will be reduced by 60% as our energy efficiency improvements and the solar roof system more than offset the increased electricity usage of the electric vehicle.

Q: You mentioned earlier that you agreed with the President’s Climate Action Plan, what did you mean?

A: While we originally reduced our energy footprint to save money, we have learned over time that reduced energy usage also usually results in reduced carbon emissions (at least here in West Virginia). While not everyone believes in climate change and the increasing danger to ourselves and future generations, we believe solar energy and other renewables provide the best way to minimize our long-term energy costs while minimizing our environmental impact.

Q: How did you hear about Pickering Energy Solutions?           

A: Both at work and doing an internet search for local solar energy companies.  In May 2013, we contacted Pickering Energy Solutions for a solar rooftop site assessment of our home. We were pleasantly surprised to learn the return on investment from the solar roof system is higher than the return on our retirement fixed-income investments!

About PES:

Established in 2012, Pickering Energy Solutions is a growth oriented company focused on making renewable energy systems a reality for residential and commercial building owners through direct sales or through a Power Purchase Agreement or Power Leasing arrangement.

About the Author:

Lance McCoy serves as Communications Director for Pickering Energy Solutions.  Lance is a green-minded entrepreneur and is a Certified Photovoltaic Site Assessor through MREA.