solar energy at home

Solar Energy Alerts! | December 2009 |
Solar Energy Alerts Newsletter

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In This Issue...

  1. Focus On: Solar Lighting for the Holidays
  2. What's New on
  3. Upcoming Solar Energy Events
  4. Solar News for Homeowners

Focus On: Solar Lighting for the Holidays

Welcome to the December issue of Solar Energy Alerts! Since the holiday season is upon us, I wanted to give you some ideas on how you can use solar lighting during this time of year.

There are many more types of solar lights available for holiday decorating than even a year ago. There are the traditional string lights and icicle lights. There are now even net lights available which make it easy to decorate bushes and trees.

Check out my page on Solar Christmas Lights for a full breakdown of their benefits, how they work, and the different types you can use. I've listed 25 specific types of Holiday Lights on that page that can make your yard the envy of the neighborhood.

What's New on

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Upcoming Solar Energy Events

Featured Solar Energy Events

These are the events that readers have submitted to our database...

Other Solar Energy Events

Here are some other solar and renewable energy events that you may be interested in attending...

Date Location Event
Dec 7-8, 2009 Malacca Malaysia The International Conference on Energy and Environment 2009 (ICEE2009)
Dec 7-8, 2009 Kuala Terengganu Malaysia Environmental Science and Technology Conference 2009 (ESTEC 09)
Dec 7-8, 2009 Minneapolis, MN USA Midwestern Transmission: Balancing Planning and Priorities
Dec 8-9, 2009 Washington, D.C. USA Fuel Cells Durability and Performance
Dec 8, 2009 Toronto, Ontario, Canada Municipalities and Renewable Energy: Assessing what Option(s) is Right for You
Dec 9-11, 2009 Pasadena, CA USA The Green California Schools Summit
Dec 9-11, 2009 Penang, Malaysia Communication and Environment: Transformation for a Sustainable Tomorrow
Dec 9-10, 2009 Miami, FL USA The Future of Smart Grid DSM Programs
Dec 11-12, 2009 Delhi, India Carbon Credit International Conference 2009
Dec 12, 2009 Bhubaneswar, Orissa, India National Conference on Future Perspectives of Renewable Energy Sources
Dec 13-15, 2009 Istanbul, Turkey Ecocity 2009, Istanbul
Dec 17-19, 2009 Agra, UP, India Recent Advances in Environmental Protection (RAEP) 2009
Dec 17-19, 2009 Dhaka, Bangladesh International Conference on the Developments in Renewable Energy Technology

Do you know of any solar energy or green-living events happening in your area? Add them to the database using our online Submit Form. It's quick and easy.

Solar News for Homeowners

The Network for New Energy Choices has published a report called Freeing the Grid which looks at the best and worst practices in state net-metering policies and interconnection standards. It evaluates each state based on a defined set of criteria. If you have a grid-tied system or are planning on installing one, consider this a must read.

For more information (PDF): Freeing the Grid 2009

The state of California is taking the lead in space-based solar power. The California legislature approved a project that would beam solar power from space beginning in 2016. Utility PG&E would purchase power from Solaren.

For more information: California Gives Green Light for Space-Based Solar

In Phoenix, Arizona, more than 100 solar permits for residential installations are being issued every month. But the City Council is looking into how it can increase that number. To meet their goal of more than 1000 installation financed in 2010, they are looking at how other cities promote residential solar power and solar water heating installations.

For more information: Solar Phoenix Finance Program Launched

Even with the increased emphasis from the Obama administration on alternative energy sources such as solar and other renewable energies, there are still significant roadblock for homeowners interested in going solar. Homeowner Associations (HOAs) are notorious for making it so difficult for homeowners to install panels on their homes that many give up. Even in states such as California that provide protections for solar rights, homeowners are losing legal battles against HOAs.

For more information: Fight for Your Right to Solar: HOAs vs Homeowners

Here' a story of a Tennessee man who had a 16.5 kW solar power system installed for his home. This is a much larger system than most homeowners would ever consider installing, but it's interesting to see how others are implementing solar in their lives.

For more information: Somerville Man Harnesses Sun's Power with 16.5-kilowatt System

If your planning on installing a solar energy system for your home, take a lesson from New York - Install your system as soon as you can. The New York incentive program was so popular, that to keep the program from running out of money, the incentive was reduced from $3 per watt to $2.50 per watt. Homeowners that waited received a smaller incentive. So what are you waiting for?

For more information: Demand for Solar Energy Subsidies puts Stress on New York State Program

California is the leading state for solar power generation in the U.S. But do you know what state is the runner-up? It's not Arizona or another Sun-rich state, it's New Jersey. Yup, that's right, New Jersey. How did a state that only had six solar installations seven years ago go to 4,340 installations today? They did it through subsidies and tradeable credits that are sold on the open market.

For more information: The Pursuit of New Ways to Boost Solar Development

In South Africa, the Minister of Energy has announced a solar water heating framework that would be used to meet her department's goal of installing 1 million solar water heaters in homes and businesses over the next five years. This program will create up to 100,000 jobs and reduce conventional water heating needs by two-fifths.

For more information: Solar water heating for homes

In Closing...

Is there a residential solar energy topic you'd like more information about? If so, let me know through my Contact page (make sure to note that you subscribe to Solar Energy Alerts! so I can put your request to the top of the list). I'm always looking for topics of interest to Solar-Energy-At-Home readers.

Until next time...

Michael's Signature