Alternative Energy Living

The municipality of Dysart et al since 1867 This is my off-grid home It’s about 1,100 square feet, and I produce all of my own power 12 months a year I do that with a combination of solar and wind so I generate about 17% of my load requirements by electricity from wind and the balance is from from solar. A lot of people choose off good living really for three primary reasons one is lifestyle the other is environmental values And the other is remote access or just simply hydro access where they get hydro to come into your home is gonna be an expensive proposition So when you have a cost like that you’ve got a cost really that your net cost could be reduced substantially To go off grid off grid of course means that you are off the grid you’re not connected to the National Grid and as such you produce and store all of your own power. I live with every modern convenience here. I’m not missing out on anything I’ve Matter of fact even this summer I have a portable air conditioner for those unbearable days The success of choosing to be off-grid is just simply really rationalizing how you use power and When you look at that and in detail it’s quite remarkable how you can lower your load requirements so example your overall consumption and Therefore make off-grid living Affordable it’s a very very unique lifestyle. You’re not tied to a utility you’re not dependent on a utility you’ve built resilience into your lifestyle and You’re the one that’s in control, which which a lot of people today would like to achieve So it’s not so much with the size of the home It’s about the people that live in in the house when it comes to making choices about alternative energy It’s about your consumption And there’s two things about consumption one is the total amount of power that you’ll use in a day and the other is your peak demand load so for example if you’ve raised two daughters like I have and They’re both living at home and one daughter gets up and uses the blow-dryer and the other one uses the curling iron and dad turns on the Coffeemaker and then he turns on the waffle maker and then he throws the load of laundry in and before he goes to work That would be called the demand load What is the highest amount of power at any given time that my home is going to suddenly need? So if you can look at those two factors, what is my overall load on a daily basis? and how Am I treating my peak demand load and do I have to do all of those things at the same time? And if you can adjust those things and rationalize them you can choose alternative energy in a very very Functional means that is cost effective and affordable There’s other programs that are available that are grid-tied Applications, so these are at these are applications where you’re tied to the grid you’re connected to the grid with a hydrometer net metering is a great way to to insulate yourself or at least mitigate the risk of energy inflation and energy going up in price and you can install a generation means let’s say it’s solar you’re gonna use your own power first and You send whatever you don’t use to the grid for future credits And they apply those credits to your account down the road for example in the winter months when you’re not producing anywhere near as much The credits you’ve produced in July are then consumed and used in the winter months We’re in the power room everybody has in their home It’s where your power panel is Power room and a home that’s outfitted with alternative energy is just a little bit different well You would have a generation means outside whether that be solar or wind and the power that those Generation means are producing has to go somewhere And if you’re off-grid the place it goes is to a device to be able to charge your batteries so this these are charge controllers these are these are controllers that take the power the DC current from the solar panels and It monitors the charge that it’s delivering to your batteries Then when the batteries are fully charged the charge controllers simply stop charging And this is the wind controller which does the exact same thing it’s just monitoring the current that’s coming in from the wind power to help charge the batteries So this is the battery bank. This is where the power stored, so it’s just like car batteries They hold DC power a car battery will hold about 25 or 30 amp hours these will hold 430 so they’re very big batteries they weigh about 90 pounds each and this battery bank will store about 44,000 watts of power And the other piece of equipment that we have in an off-grid and also in net metering renewable energy applications Is an inverter so the inverter takes the power from batteries, which is actually held in DC or direct current? We’ve all heard of that like the batteries we put in a flashlight our DC batteries These are not unlike those as a matter of fact they’re exactly the same They’re just bigger, so these are DC batteries they produce DC power that power has do invert to AC So that your home can use it through its power panel so in an off-grid application We have charge controllers and batteries and an inverter and when you net meter All you need is the inverter this is my wind turbine and The wind turbine is on a 110 foot tower. It’s called a guy wired tower So it’s very actually very very easy to take down and put it up Wind turbines don’t need much servicing. That’s been up for five years and hasn’t had to come down It’s a one and a half kilo watt turbine so I get about 17 percent of my power For my home from the means of generation that the turbine provides So in the summer months the turbine isn’t very important at all But in the winter months when we have you know one third of the peak Sun hours Or less than we do normally in the summer That’s when you really really are happy you have a wind turbine because we’ll have more consistent regular winds In the fall and the winter And the wind is responsible for the makeup of energy that the solar isn’t necessarily produced able to produce in the winter because of course We had much shorter days And we don’t have anywhere near the same number of peak Sun hours in the winter as we do in the summer Renewable energy in today’s world is a very very big industry? We’ve got developing countries around the world that are using renewable energy sources as their primary means of energy production Because of that we have mass building worldwide with renewable energy components so the costs are declining Dramatically making it a lot more practical for the average homeowner the average person so to give you an example I actually put this up four years ago and these panels were about eight hundred and twenty dollars a piece and they are 250 watt panel and Today you could buy this exact same panel for about two hundred and fifteen dollars So it’s become very cost practical to to now consider renewable energy in particular solar If anyone is looking to decrease their hydro costs while at the same time of course increasing their own energy security Net metering is now a very cost viable solution to do that so renewable energy solutions in today’s world where we have a lot of potential diverging risks Renewable energy can bring you energy security and independent lifestyle and put you in control of your own power

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